Wednesday, July 21, 2010

History of the Festival

Once it had been decided to establish a Festival of Glass, the sub-committee looked for a venue to hold such an event. Church and school halls were considered, however the Potato Shed was clearly the best venue because of it lending itself to a large range of possible configurations to cater for a diverse range of glass products and services.

The other issue was "ownership or naming" of the event. The Drysdale & Clifton Springs Community Association Inc. are establishing the Festival and right from the beginning, the committee felt that calling it the Drysdale and Clifton Springs Festival of Glass was going to be too much of a mouthful, despite the fact that the Association is based in both towns.

It was decided to keep it simple and just call it the Drysdale Festival of Glass, primarily because the event will be held in Drysdale. If there had been a suitable location in Clifton Springs, no doubt it could have been labelled the Clifton Springs Glass Show or something similar.

Clifton Springs does have some historical connection with glass, due to the fact that in the late 1800's there was a mineral springs bathhouse and bottling plant on the foreshore at Clifton Springs. A lovely hotel was built on the clifftop, near the golf clubhouse and the mineral springs complex was a huge vacation spot not just for people who came out from Geelong and districts with their horse drawn buggies, but from Melbourne and beyond, who arrived here via ships. It was indeed unfortunate that the hotel was burnt to the ground in about 1925 and was never rebuilt. Motor cars and other holiday destinations took over and the mineral springs plant went into decline and was literally abandoned. Very little of what was a thriving industry remains.

There are not many of the original bottles that remain in their entirety, however we will endeavour to have some at the Festival for viewing
The Festival has been the brainchild of the Drysdale & Clifton Springs Comunity Association Inc. who had been exploring the possibility of creating a Festival for both townships. It did not take long for the idea of the Festival of Glass to gather some momentum and sub-committee was formed to investigate the viability of such a project.
The sub-committee is headed by the Association President, Doug Carson, along with 2 local glass artists in Betty O'Driscoll and Michelle Payne. Anne Brackley, Lyn Ingles, Mercedes Drummond and Roger Lavingdale make up the rest of the team who are bringing the Festival to the Potato Shed in Drysdale in February 2011.
The Potato Shed is a vibrant arts centre situated 2 km's from the centre of Drysdale and has a large theatre, plus several rooms available for display purposes. An ideal location for a Festival as there is plenty of parking, a lovely rural outlook and plenty of outside display areas if we need them.

Monday, July 19, 2010

Learning Issues

Today we are starting a blog for the Drysdale Festival of Glass. The Festival will be held at the Potato Shed in Drysdale on the 20th February 2011 from 10 am - 5 pm. The blog is being "driven" by people who have never or hardly ever blogged before, so please excuse any laughable entries as we try to work our way through the mindfield. Oh to be young and reckless with a computer.

Getting back to the Festival: our intention to to invite glass artists of every description to the Festival. Bead makers, people who make mosaics, jewellry, casting, moulding, etc. In the industrial and domestic side of things, we want builders and architects to show their glass designs, we want solar panels to be on show, double glazed windows, automotive glass etc. Historically we would like to see some artifacts from the Clifton Springs bottling plant from the late 1800's, and the list goes on to include medical, optical, recycled and beverage glass.

There is an enormous amount of work to be done to bring all this together, and we trust that the community and the glass movement in general get behind this event, to encourage it to become an annual event, showcasing glass through art, craft & industry


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