Mariella McKinley 01

 Photograph courtesy of the artist.

Just when I thought Montsalvat couldn’t possibly do anything more to delight me, I met Mariella McKinley.  She’s been working away there over the last few months, preparing her new studio space.  It’s been a big task.  Moving in her lathe (which weighs in at 250 kilograms) was a huge challenge. Thankfully the film crew of  IFrankenstein (filming at Montsalvat at the time) came to her aid with some serious weight lifting equipment.  She’s now ready and enthusiastic about getting stuck in to some work.

Mariella McKinley 1

Photograph courtesy of the artist.

The exquisite vessels above were first blown and then carved. Intricate painstaking work, but I think you’ll agree, well worth the effort.

Mariella has excellent credentials.  Born in Melbourne, she studied at Monash University where she graduated with a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Glass (with honours).  She recently returned from taking up a scholarship to Pilchuck Glass School in Washington, north of Seattle, where she was both student and assistant teacher. Well known glass making icon, Dale Chihuly is credited with starting the school. Prior to that, she travelled to Italy, again on a scholarship, to further enrich her arts practice. Closer to home, Mariella worked for several years at the Jam Factory Gallery in Adelaide where she is currently exhibiting work with other artists in an exhibition called “Transparency” (it’s all about technique).  

Mariella McKinley Isiiad 4

Mariella McKinley Isiiad 6

Mariella is so happy in her Montsalvat Studio.  She looked at many studios before she settled on Montsalvat. Most of the others she looked at had an industrial edge. Montsalvat has a softer, warmer atmosphere which  creates a lovely counterpoint to her work. Typical of Montsalvat, the studio has little recesses and mezzanines to add to the fascination.  

Mariella McKinley Isiiad 1

The texture of the rendered walls in Mariella’s studio adds another dimension to this magnificent vase (above).

Mariella McKinley Isiiad 7 copy

In addition to the Jam Factory Gallery in Adelaide, Mariella is represented by Veronica George Gallery High Street Armadale, Kirra Gallery Federation Square and Glass Plus Gallery South Melbourne.  It’s a real treat to trawl around these gallery websites…glass extraordinaire.  Enjoy them.

My sincere thanks to Mariella for generously welcoming me in to her studio, thereby reminding me that Montsalvat provides art lovers with endless pleasure.

All work in this post is ©Mariella McKinley.