Documentary. Italia. 2005.
A middle aged German man in a white coat blows delicately into a small glass tube. Slowly a bubble forms at the end. Jost Haas is using skills unchanged for nearly two hundred years to make another unique glass eye.
Jost learnt his trade in a glass studio in a town in west Germany."We all come from there, I'm told." Jost speaks softly and calmly, a lilting German accent cutting cross his excellent English. His descriptions are full of a unnerving humour, unique turns of phrase pepper his everyday speech.
The ball at the end of the tube has cooled, now the iris is painted on with ‘People look at our eyes to connect with us and are very much aware of their artificial one’.
When Jost retires, another glass maker will have to be found from his native Germany. He came himself when a German practitioner in Britain died. There has been no-one who has stepped forward to take on his mantle yet. Nor does he think there will be.
So Jost, as the last glass eye maker left in Britain, keeps his trade for those who prefer the ‘wetability’ of the beautiful glass eyes he makes.
Director/ Producer: Tomas Leach
Cinematography: Ben Todd
Editor: Sam Storey
Sound: Holger Stenschke & Suzanne Savage
Titles: Francesco Meneghini
DANI FILMA, Mediterranean Festival of Documentary Films, Siroki Brijeg (Bosnia and Herzegovina)
Files for Download:
The Glass Eye Maker [extract] (TGEM extractweb.mov - 6940.371 kb)