Welcome to my World - 20th Jan 2014

Di Tocker has been working on the largest cast glass pieces she has worked on with 2 new works for an exhibition Mental Blocks opening at ArtStation, in Ponsonby, Auckland next month.

The 2 glass blocks Di have produced are approximately the size of large shoe boxes, with 17kg of Blackwood Casting Crystal glass going into each mould.  She has tilted the walls and ceiling, and a figure in each block is awkwardly trapped within the highly polished faces of the glass.  Di hopes viewers will be encouraged to try to imagine what life must be like for those dealing with mental health issues, homelessness and addiction. 

Di says "I was thrilled to be selected for this show.  A few reasons - to be selected as one of four artists from 40 applicants was an honour, to show my glass work amongst other mediums is also exciting, but above all I felt that my recent works (Rooms) were such a good fit for this show that aims to talk about mental illness, homelessness and addictions".  Di says she has relished the challenge to produce conceptual works, made possible by the grant supplied to her to cover costs of making the large cast works.


Exhibition details;
Mental Blocks opens on the 19th of February 2014, running for 1 month.
Supporting organization - Changing Minds.
ArtStation Gallery, Ponsonby, Auckland.
Artists include Di Tocker, Fraser Hoffe, Mark Strachan and Sarah Moktar.

New Galleries on board - 25th Jun 2013

Glass Work delivered to Waiheke Art Gallery June 2013 Glass Sculpture by Di Tocker is now in stock at Waiheke Art Gallery and The Little Gallery of Fine Arts, Tairua.

You can find Di's glass work at these galleries:

ArtsPost, Hamilton, NZ

Helena Bay Gallery, Helena Bay, NZ


Inspirit Gallery, Hamilton, NZ

Soul Gallery, Hamilton, NZ

The Little Gallery of Fine Arts, Tairua, NZ


Waiheke Art Gallery, Waiheke Island, NZ

ZeaYou Gallery, Taupo, NZ

The Glass Artists Gallery, Glebe, Sydney, Australia

Playing with Clay and Glass - 1st Jun 2013

On the 25th of May I had the pleasure to share my studio with an awesome extended family group consisting of 4 adults and 4 teenagers.

As an introduction to casting glass, we made models from clay and used the open method of casting glass. We removed the clay as soon as the plaster molds were set, but before the clay goes hard. 

Working with small flattish forms we could fire them in 5 days allowing for the molds to be opened the following Saturday.  There was great excitement to see the results and range of colours.

We had such a great time that this group is coming back again in a couple of months...meanwhile here are some comments from the group;

"I found the glass course was actually really fun, as well as challenging it really got in touch with my creative side, playing around with ideas. The glass course itself was challenging, but a good challenge, and I really enjoyed it and I love my glass pieces and I can’t wait to do it again."
Shani aged 16

"I really liked Di because she wasn’t grumpy, she was friendly and she helped me when I needed help. When I didn’t like my clay I was allowed to scrunch into a ball and make it again. I loved doing the workshop as a whole family and my glass pieces are awesome."
Mila aged 12

"It was an amazing experience for me, and everyone too. You helped me and guided me, thanks for that."
Kaya aged 14

"It was so cool making glass. Di was really nice and helped me when I couldn't think of an idea. We got to pick the glass colours we wanted to use. Now we have our creations at home and get to look at them when ever we want!"
Jonty. Aged 14

If anyone is looking for a great family or team event this is the one for you.
We found regardless of age and ability everyone had a fantastic time and created some amazing glass. Half the fun was seeing the joy that everyone had collectively. Di is awesome!
Donna, Rosina, Nadine and Kelli (adults)

Classy Awards for Construction - 17th Apr 2013

A new series of cast glass awards has left Dicastglass studio, each delicately engraved with silver text and housed in a satin lined wooden box. 

Di Tocker was commissioned to create one large Supreme Winner award along with a miniature for the recipient to treasure.  Hynds Pipeline Systems sponsored 4 clear miniature awards presented to the category winners.

New Zealand Contractors Federation - Waikato branch had their inaugural awards ceremony on the 5th of April, with a dinner and entertainment at The Atrium, Hamilton.  This will be an ongoing event as the Contractors Federation hopes Waikato will be proud to present their completed projects to the Waikato and then onto the National competition.

The Supreme Winner was Fulton Hogan for the Te Rapa section of The Waikato Expressway.

Cast Glass Selected for Small Sculpture Show - 17th Apr 2013

Di Tocker's new cast glass work High Expectations has been selected for the 2013 Small Sculpture Prize at Waiheke Community Art Gallery by Matt Ellwood, Senior Lecturer, Whitecliffe College of Arts and Design,

A total of 35 works have been selected for the 2013 Small Sculpture Prize exhibition.  Selector Matt Ellwood commented that “it was very hard to make decisions as all entries were of a very high caliber.”  Over 70 entries were received and most included two submissions.

The Exhibition Opening and Award Ceremony will be held on Saturday 4 May at 5pm.  Matt Ellwood will speak about his selection and Craig Little from Davis Funerals, the sponsors, will present the Award.  This event will be a ticketed event for Gallery Members and other Guests.  Tickets are $25 per person available through the Waiheke Community Art Gallery.

Casting Glass - lolly shop now open! - 21st Mar 2013

blackwood casting crystal New stock of Blackwood Casting Crystal has arrived in New Zealand.  Di Tocker of Dicastglass, online supplier of glass casting materials has just received 200kg from Australia.

Di says "Its just like being in a lolly shop for glassies when I get to unpack all the glass.  I can't help but wonder what this gorgeous raw material will end up as when it is cast".

Blackwood Casting Crystal is Di's chosen glass for using in closed and open kiln molds. 

Benefits of Blackwood Casting Crystal

Artisan glass, handcrafted in Victoria, Australia, Blackwood Casting Crystal has many benefits.

Quality
- With 35% lead content, Blackwood Casting Crystal provides a true transparent quality to cast glass works.
Volume
- 35% lead content gives you a high volume to weight ratio.
Precise measurement
- It is supplied as (un-annealed) chunks.
The chunks are easy to break, allowing for exact measurement of glass quantities.
Colours
- An excellent range of very organic-like colours.
- All colours are compatible and blend well.
- Striking colours are reliable. (striking glasses are those which change colour with heat application - reds, golds, white)
Molding qualities
- Glass releases well from molds. (Note: this is dependent on mold quality and firing schedule)
- Suitable for closed and open mold casts.
- Suitable for use with crucible (pot) or direct into the mold.
Finishing
- Optimal surface can be achieved with little cold working. (Note: This is dependent on required results.)
- Responds well to sanding, grinding and polishing.

Colours and Cost of Blackwood Casting Crystal

Casting Crucibles (aka Terracotta Pots) - 12th Mar 2013

If you need crucibles (aka terracotta pots) for casting then Di Tocker of Dicastglass can help you.  She has a full range of sizes in stock to match your glass casting needs.

Crucible Sizes In Stock - Dicastglass

  • 9cm vase
  • 11cm vase
  • 13cm vase
  • 15cm vase
  • 19cm vase
  • 19cm ribbed bowl
  • 23cm ribbed bowl

Crucible Casting Tips

  • Use the smallest size you need.
  • Clean the crucible thoroughly and sand around the hole.
  • Use each crucible only once, as devitrification in the casting glass may occur.

Making Rubber Molds - a fun challenge - 26th Feb 2013

Students who recently undertook Di Tocker's Rubber Mold Making Course had a lot to think about about over the 2.5 days in her studio.  Rubber molds can be a challenging task.  Each student made their own rubber mold from a personal object. 

The six who attended came from various backgrounds including some who have done previous workshops with Di, some who have learned cast glass with other tutors and a bronze caster.

Rubber Molds - useful tools

Di says "Rubber molds are a very useful tool in the casting studio.  They will last for 100's of wax pours, can be very accurate with detail or serve as a 'blank' for creating base wax forms to slightly alter with each use".  To create this accuracy a complicated process to produce the mold is required.  All six students produced successful molds which they can now take home to work with.

Workshop Participant - Comments

"The process is a complex one and we most definitely needed the two-and-a-half days to complete our molds. Di demonstrated every step and provided us with comprehensive written instructions, which will be invaluable for future reference. The group was also small enough that Di could observe what everyone was doing and provide help to those who were having difficulty"

"I really liked seeing everyone else’s work, I learn just as much by seeing other people push their ideas as I do by pushing my own.  The best thing is, my mind is once again buzzing with ideas and I cannot wait to do the next course.  Thanks for everything Di. You’re a fantastic and patient teacher and that is perfect for me".

"I have attended several courses over the years and found Di's teaching technique to be the best I've experienced. She is not only an extremely accomplished glass artist, but she is happy to share her knowledge and has the patience required to cope with different levels of experience".



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