Following the success of their first book on the brilliant glass pipe blowing art form, independent publishers GritCityInc present "Smoked Volume 2"—a detailed look at over 30 artists transforming functional pipes into beautiful works of art.
The "Smoked" series, along with Brooklyn's renowned fine art glass pipe gallery Easy Street, are helping to bring respect to a medium formerly considered mere utility. From quirky ice cream cones to complex pieces, the book shares the thoughtful side of pipe blowing.
Standing out for his intricate cannabis sculptural pipe (above right), Mr. Gray layers glass upon glass for a realistic take on the commonly consumed plant. Packaged in a wooden crate stamped with "Made In Humboldt," Mr. Gray draws beautiful obvious ties to marijuana, showing off the prepossessing side of the flower.
A resident artist and teacher at experimental studio Philadelphia Glass Works, Joshua Opdenaker (or JOP) creates unusual, oft-animal-inspired works that display his quest for perfect execution and his philosophy that "art is not in the finished piece, it is in the physical movement of creating the work." Even simpler pipes, like "Thumb Spoon," convey his irreverent sense of humor as well as distinct ability to manipulate and refine glass.