Jack’s primary research interest is in 20thC Scandinavian Glass, critical and theoretical approaches to Contemporary Applied Art and Craft, and the role of the artist ‘in’ industry.
Jack Dawson is a Fine Art and Craft Historian, Author, Curator and practising Ceramicist. Jack was awarded a Diploma in Design (Ceramics) 1970, and was elected a Fellow of the Society of Antiquaries (Scot) in 1977. In 1981 he was awarded a BA(Hons) History of Modern Art and Design from Newcastle Polytechnic, and followed this with a post-grad MLitt in History of Art from the University of Glasgow, and a PhD at the University of Sunderland.
Prior to embarking on a career as an art historian, he originally studied Ceramics at Newcastle College of Art and subsequently ran his own studio in the Scottish Borders during the 1970s, and was an active member of the Scottish Craft Centre, exhibiting extensively in Britain and abroad. Jack was also a founding member of the Scottish Craftsman Potters Association. Jack is involved in teaching at undergraduate and post-graduate level and has supervised a number of PhDs.
Art in industry was the central theme of his PhD which was titled ‘The Role of Art and the Artist in Industry: Finnish and Swedish Glass in the Twentieth Century’. Jack has been the curator of a number of exhibitions including the ‘Art and Craft of the Etcher 1870 -1930, (1991). For the ‘Year of the Visual Arts’ 1996, he curated the most comprehensive exhibition of ‘Finnish Post War Glass 1945 – 1996’ to be shown in Britain and was author of the accompanying book.
In 2000, he curated a major exhibition of Swedish glass ‘Innovation and Diversity: 75 Years of Swedish Glass Art’ with a book of the same title, and which toured venues in Britain and Germany. Jack also researched and curated the ‘Sunderland Glass Connections’ exhibition in 2001, and was author of ‘Art in Industry: 20thC Swedish Glass’ for the IIRG online journal ‘Gateway to Glass’. He is also the author of a major monograph on the Finnish glass artist Oiva Toikka ‘Oiva Toikka: Glass and Design’ published in Finland in English and Finnish editions, 2007. Jack has lectured widely on Scandinavian glass both at home and abroad.
Jack’s recent research has focused on the iconic glass artist/designer Tapio Wirkkala and the publication and curating of a major exhibition ‘Tapio Wirkkala: Poet in Glass and Silver’ for the Finnish Glass Museum (2013).
Glass Maker and Artist
I have worked at National Glass Centre since finishing my degree in 2005.
Head of Enterprise, Commissioning & the Studio
I am Head of Enterprise, Commissioning and the Studio at National Glass Centre at the University of Sunderland, England and am a member of the Senior Management Team.
My work uses a range of media which acknowledges the interface between both traditional practice and new media.
Learning and Engagement Officer
Rachel joined National Glass Centre in 2007 to support the Centre's learning and engagement programme having completed MA Glass the previous year.
Kalki Mansel is one of National Glass Centre's resident glass artists.
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