Glass Pipes – Tool or Art

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Glass and early forms of glassblowing have been a part of human civilization for centuries, about 6,000 years give or take.

Glass has been used for utilitarian purposes and ornamental purposes, from tiny beads for jewelry to windows for huge skyscrapers.

    Natural glass as produced by volcanoes or by lightning striking sand are the earliest forms of glass with manufactured glass appearing around 1500 BC. During this early period the use of glass was limited to glass colored jewelry and extremely small glass containers. During this period glass was considered as valuable as gems. It was a show of wealth.

    The invention of the blowpipe, an essential tool needed for glassblowing around 30BC, glass suddenly became easier and cheaper to make. Artistic glassblowers now became more innovative with their craft and found more outlets for their creativity.

    Leaps and bounds were made in the glassblowing industry and it continued to thrive. As the 1960’s approached the birth of glass pipes came into existence. At this time pipes were very simple, just a tube of blown glass. But the phenomenon was just getting started.

    Bong_2Now prized for their artistic designs, this craft attracts the young and old craftsmen wanting to express themselves in a culture that was once frowned upon. Now people can own a glass pipe just for artistic show. Dragons, unicorns and serpents are common fantasy motifs while mushrooms, animals, trees and flowers are common naturalist motifs. But they don’t stop there. The glass can even be blown into complicated designs like gears or engineering designs. The pipes can even be made to have double or even triple chambers that hold ice to cool the smoke. Precise chemical formulas are used and now colors and designs once thought impossible are possible. These days the pieces can be as intricate or as simple in design and color as the artist wants. And no two are exactly alike as they are handcrafted, not made from a mold.

    These works of art can be purchased at smoke shops, online, from private artists and even at craft festivals. You can purchase glass bongs and pipes from online headshop at the most affordable price. They have been seen in hippie stores across the country and can range in price from $10.00 up to thousands of dollars, depending on your use and artistic taste. People don’t buy them just for using anymore, they also buy glass pipes to put on display in their homes as works of art.