3 Surprising Facts about Glass-Breaking Artist Yorgos Papadopoulos

Yorgos Papadopoulos
Glass artist Yorgos Papadopoulos with some of his smaller-scale work.

3. Yorgos Papadopoulos treats and colors huge, industrial sheets of glass by handHe uses hammers to carefully smash the glass, occasionally running an electrical current through it. “Hammers are my brushes,” says Papadopoulos.

2. His delicate-looking pieces are actually not all that fragile. After breaking large sheets of glass, Papadopoulos re-laminates them to make architectural-scale artwork that look easily shatterable but are extremely durable. He’s coated them with sandblasting, glass pigments, gold leaf, enamels, silicone gels, and resin, among other layers.

1. His life’s work came from a happy accident. “I was studying ceramics and glass [in school] and by mistake, I dropped some glass and it smashed but stayed together. It was gorgeous,” says Papadopoulos. “I needed to do something with it.”