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Biography: Ronald Pennell

Ronald Pennell

Ronald Pennell is recognized as one of the U.K.’s leading glass engravers, having worked in this medium since the late '70s. His work is also much admired in the Czech Republic where in 1981, he was made Honorary Professor at the Academy of Arts in Prague.

Pennell learned the art of engraving gems while on a scholarship course in Germany (Idar-Oberstein). While waiting for a delivery of rock-crystal, he began working with glass. And now he decorates glass following the same composition guidelines used for medallions and gems.

Pennell engraves directly onto glass using a fixed-head lathe and diamond wheels, and the designs evolve spontaneously without reference to prior drawings. His engravings take on an ironic and slightly humorous view of the human condition based upon events taken from English country life or European and world myths. His work is the subject of a book, Modern Myths: the Art of Ronald Pennell.

Ronald Pennell has been awarded the City of London Medal and 1st prize, was elected fellow of the Royal Society of Arts, the Lynggaard Prize 1st Kanazawa Glass Triennale in Japan, and Dominik Binman Gold Medal, Czech Republic. His work is in the collections of major museums worldwide, including the British Museum, The Corning Museum of Glass, Ebeltoft Museum Denmark, Hokkaido Museum of Modern Art, Japan, and the Victoria and Albert Museum.