Adam Smolensky of Smo Glass compresses mystifying vortexes into small glass marbles. His colorful, handcrafted creations fit between your fingers, but as you look inside, they appear vast—as if their spirals could go on forever. While these coils are common motifs in Smolensky’s work, it’s just one facet of his marvelous designs. In addition, he produces patterning reminiscent of scales and sea coral, with layered textures that build a beautiful visual complexity within the half-to-two-inch pieces.
Smolensky recently shared one of his art glass marbles on Reddit. It was a close-up shot of a “glass vortex marble” with a swirling rainbow pattern and glittery center. “All my vortex marbles are done on [a] solid rod,” he explains, meaning that they are formed on the tip of a glass stick. As for the sparkling characteristic, that’s the work of fuming—a technique where the glass is placed in a metal “smoke” and becomes embedded within.
If you want to get your hands on these tiny, infinite galaxies, Smolensky sells marbles, dishes, and sculptures through his online shop.