These two axes are one of the museum’s most recent acquisitions for the international studio glass collection. These were part of the 3rd European Glass Prize awarded in Coburg in 2011. An everyday wooden handle with a glass blade and an everyday iron axe blade with a glass handle are placed next to one another in Sebastian Richter’s Axe 1 and Axe 2. Richter lives in Halle, which is the 2nd centre of innovative glass art after Munich.
The fascinating thing about Richter’s Axes is not the technical, but the artistic concept, which epitomizes the contemporary Studio Glass generation. Everyday objects made of glass appear remarkably often because the disassociation the material glass induces evokes an unfamiliar perception in the viewer and creates a new awareness in the conscious mind. Richter plays on this irritation in the viewer who asks whether a real axe ever seemed as threatening as these two disassociated „Axes.“
„Because violence and force“ - says Richter – „ are ubiquitous in our society today, we react indifferently to them, have become used to them. The realisation process that takes place when looking at the axes makes it clear to the viewer that force and violence can divide, wound and extinguish – just as an axe can split a log, kill a person and shatter glass into a thousand pieces.“