Many women work artistically with glass using a furnace today and one of these, Isabelle Böhm, grew up in the glass centre of Wertheim. She studied the free art of glass at the institute of artistic ceramics and glass in Höhr-Grenzhausen and at Koblenz University of Applied Science under professors Ingrid Conrad-Lindig and Jens Gussek.
Isabelle Böhm has called the figure of Mary in front of you, „The Weeping,“ and it is a Mary that sheds blood tears like the ones repeatedly reported in the news who by way of a miracle seem to cry tears of blood. Mary is just as much a cult figure as a consumer product that can be carried inside everyone, or as a tacky souvenir. According to Böhm the belief in her is something intangible and therefore as fragile as glass.
Böhm made her Mary from milk glass in 2012 using the full-melting method. The artist first made the model out of wax and then moulded a plaster of paris and chamotte mould around it. She then melted the painstakingly detailed wax model and removed from the inside of the mould to make room for the glass.
Then she filled the plaster of paris-chamotte mould with glass frit and simultaneously heated the glass-melting furnace to around 850 degrees Celcius to melt the glass. The glass can take up to10 hours to shape to the mould completely. A long cooling phase after the melting process is extremely important otherwise it can shatter into a thousand pieces.