From torching crème brulee to making stunning confections of glass, a Castlemaine chef turned flameworker is exciting international interest.

Writer: Sarah Harris – Photographer: David Field

It was a tiny torch that lit the flame of glass sculptor Cas Davey’s practice.
“A friend from the States came to visit and he bought this small torch and a handful of coloured glass rods. When he went back to the States he left the torch with me and I just started playing and that was it. I was hooked,” she recalls of her introduction to lamp-working in 2002.
It’s remarkable that she’s progressed in such a short time from making glass beads at a kitchen table to making complex constructs that have been shown internationally.
But there’s a fluidity about her development as a glass artist that mirrors not only the molten medium, but a life philosophy which took her as a teen from a restaurant in the Goldfields, to Melbourne, then the Whitsunday Islands and out into the oceans of the world.
Growing up in Castlemaine, Cas was, by her own admission, not the best of students.
“Nothing at school was really a fit for me. I had been washing dishes at this restaurant since I was old enough to work and an apprentice chef position came up and I loved food, loved working in the kitchen, so I took it,” she recalls.
By age 17 she had moved on to Melbourne where she single-mindedly set about getting a position in of the top French restaurants of the day.
“I discovered I was a little too rebellious for classical French cooking, so after about a year and a half I bundled my futon into the back of my car and headed for the Whitsundays.
“I had always wanted to learn to sail. I don’t know where it came from but it was always something I wanted, but because chefs work split shifts and weekends there was no opportunity to go and join a sailing club or anything like that.”…