An Interview with Lampwork Artist Cindy Gimbrone

Cindy Gimbrone at the torch


Michelle: How long have you been working with glass?

Cindy: 8 years.

Michelle: How did you get started?

Cindy: Before I was drawn to the torch, I was drawn to wire. Metal and glass although different behaves similarly. As an artist I work to bend the medium to my vision but sometimes the medium has a will of its own, it wants to be something of its own choosing. Rather than fight it, I work with it. My creativity comes into play in how I am able to bring out what the medium wants to be.

Michelle: Tell me about the spiral beads. It seems like these are your signature item. What's the story behind them?

Cindy: Last fall, I had a personal situation that caused me a great deal of pain. I’ve been a yoga practioner for a number years and I was trying to be with the pain. I would be working at the torch thinking how the situation was familiar. I felt that it kept coming back to me over the years giving me the opportunity to face it and understand it. So the the spirals represent that – they repeat but gradually become small and finally nothing. The end represents the understanding you finally come to.

Michelle: Why are you drawn to this shape?

Cindy: It’s an outward expression of the cyclical nature of one’s emotional life.

I strive to express the internal life through an external medium that has a mind of it’s own sometimes. I rarely have a great initial wind of glass on a mandrel–I want to fight that but with the spirals, I just let them be.

One of Cindy Gimbrone's signature beads

Michelle: What one word would you use to describe your bead style?

Cindy: Thoughtful. My work is well thought out, I work on techniques and the characteristics of the glass to bring about a representation of the internal–some of the internal is readily understood, the hands or the Niagara Skies, others are more cryptic like the spirals. Although I’ve thought about the beads a great deal, the buyer doesn’t have to – they can enjoy the unique shape or the colors and I know they’ll attach their own special meaning.

Michelle: When you're not making beads, what else do you enjoy doing?

Cindy: I fuse glass, making small soap dishes, sushi plates, etc. I’m a fiber junkie, crocheting and knitting when my glass studio is too cold or too hot to work in. I’m also a sign language interpreter and I enjoy translating between people.  

Spiral of Kronos

The instructions for a necklace using one of Cindy's beads, the Spiral of Kronos necklace designed by Sandi Wiseheart, are available free on Beading Daily.

Post a Comment