The Red Vase, part 1

As exemplified in Glass of the Architects: Vienna, 1900–1937, a cooperation of the MAK and LE STANZE DEL VETRO, Austrian glass from 1900 to 1937 emerged from a confluence of ideas, individuals, and cultures. Advanced in large part by the support of Jewish patrons, artistic works of this period captured a newfound modern spirit. This year marks the 80th anniversary of Kristallnacht – a horrific night of destruction aimed at Austrian and German Jews – (November 9–10, 1938), effectively signaling the end of this innovative period of artistic production.

This is the story of a vase.

Vase, K. & K. Fachschule
fuer Glasindustrie Haida (Designer),
Karl Meltzer & Co. (Manufacturer),
Bohemia, Novy Bor (Haida), 1914-1920.
Gift of Roberta B. Elliott. 2017.3.55.

Like so many old family heirlooms, this particular vase sat at the back of a china cabinet, unnoticed and hidden from view. For almost 50 years its story went untold. That is, until one strange moment of serendipity led its owner to reawaken her family’s past. A moment that would forever change her own life.

Donated to The Corning Museum of Glass in 2017 by Roberta Elliott, the vase is now on display in the exhibition, Glass of the Architects: Vienna, 1900–1937, a cooperation of the MAK and LE STANZE DEL VETRO.

Before its donation, the vase had been in Roberta’s family for close to a century; it was passed down from her grandmother to her father and finally to Roberta, “bearing witness to an incredible tale of craftsmanship, persecution, and resilience,” says Alexandra Ruggiero, assistant curator of modern glass, and curator of the exhibition at The Corning Museum of Glass. Read more →

(Making waves:) The truth about light

It’s not unusual for a piece of art to be controversial. Historically, some of the greatest artworks of all time have been. What makes Olafur Eliasson’s piece space resonates regardless of our presence (Wednesday) so unique, isn’t that it’s inherently controversial, but that to fully understand it means discovering one of the most controversial moments in scientific history.

space resonates regardless of our presence (Wednesday),
Olafur Eliasson, 2017. © Olafur Eliasson. 2017.3.16.

Now on display at The Corning Museum of Glass, (Wednesday) is modest in construction and comprised of just four parts – an LED light, a thin opaque disk, a prismatic glass ring, and the wall-mounted arm that connects them all. The light from the LED is blocked by the disk, and the lens magnifies the ensuing battle between light and dark onto the wall. Despite this simplicity, (Wednesday) elicits an unexpected experience in the viewer. At once awed by the beautiful, concentric rings of shadow that appear on the wall, it’s also possible to be confused by the very things that excite and stir the senses.

Hidden in the simplicity is a mystery that reveals much more than meets the eye. Read more →

Failure to launch: The American glass casket industry

The Industrial Revolution in America altered nearly every part of life, including death. Until the late 1800s, burial in a hand-worked wooden coffin was common. Unfortunately, the coffin and the body inside were known to quickly succumb to the teeming array of life below ground. Their wood construction didn’t do much to discourage graverobbers either, but grieving loved ones had few other options.

American industrialization changed that. Machines produced goods that replaced many hand-crafted items, like wooden coffins. As U.S. labor shifted from farm to factory, burial options followed suit.

Glass first appeared on U.S. coffins when small clear panels were added to the lids of caskets for viewing the deceased. The window also would alert onlookers that the occupant had been accidentally buried alive if breath condensation appeared on the inside of the glass.

Eventually inventors experimented with making entire coffins of industrial glass and produced plenty of controversy in the process. Read more →

Five glass mysteries to thrill you this fall

Murder has never been more marver-lous, suspense never as shattering, as in these thrilling reads. Whether you like your mysteries classic, cozy, or kid-friendly, there’s a glass-related story for you in the Rakow Library’s collection.

Here are five books to add to your fall reading list:

The Purloined Paperweight by P.G. WodehouseThe Purloined Paperweight by P.G. Wodehouse

Originally published as Company for Henry, this zany tale of romance and intrigue follows paperweight collector J. Wendell Stickney on his quest to liberate a distant relative of a magnificent family heirloom.

Read about the history of paperweights and browse images of paperweights in the Museum’s collection.

Read more →

GlassBarge launches today at ONE°15 Brooklyn Marina in Brooklyn Bridge Park

GlassBarge launch in Brooklyn.

GlassBarge launch in Brooklyn.

The Corning Museum of Glass (CMoG) today launches GlassBarge through May 28 at One°15 Brooklyn Marina in Brooklyn Bridge Park, kicking off a four-month tour celebrating the 150th anniversary of the canal journey to bring glassmaking to Corning. GlassBarge is offering free public glassblowing demonstrations aboard a 30’ x 80’ canal barge specially equipped with the Museum’s patented all-electric glassmaking equipment. Following its debut in New York City, GlassBarge will then travel north on the Hudson River, and westward along the Erie Canal, stopping in Yonkers, Kingston, the Albany, Syracuse, and Rochester areas, and Buffalo, among other cities.

Read more →

The Studio Announces 2018 Residency Recipients

2018 Artists-In-Residence at The Studio

Anne Vibeke Mou
March 22-April 20; Public lecture April 12

Anne Vibeke Mou, Diamond Window

Anne Vibeke Mou, Diamond Window

Originally from Denmark, artist and engraver Anne Vibeke Mou has been studying and working in the United Kingdom for almost 20 years. Her interests lie predominantly in the connections between glass and environment, object and place, and the medieval history of both regions has helped to shape her work in rich and revealing ways.

Mou practices a meticulous stippling process (engraving a surface with numerous small dots) using a handheld solitaire diamond tool. She is excited to access the Rakow Research Library’s resources to further her research into waldglas (forest glass) and historical sites of relevance. During her residency in March and April 2018, Mou will produce a series of delicate objects “containing traces of organic material from carefully chosen locations,” she says.

Read more →

The Corning Museum of Glass receives grants to Launch “GlassBarge”

GlassBarge. Rendering by McLaren Engineering Group.

GlassBarge. Rendering by McLaren Engineering Group.

The Corning Museum of Glass (CMoG) today announced the receipt of $469,625 in grants through Empire State Development’s I LOVE NEW YORK program, the New York State Canal Corporation, and New York State Council on the Arts (NYSCA), under Governor Andrew Cuomo’s Regional Economic Development Council initiative. This generous funding will support the launch of GlassBarge in commemoration of the 150th anniversary of the canal journey to bring glassmaking to Corning, New York, and will further CMoG’s participation in the statewide celebration of the Erie Canal Bicentennial.

In 1868, the Brooklyn Flint Glass Company relocated to Corning, via the New York Waterways, and evolved into the company that is today known as Corning Incorporated. In celebration of this pivotal journey, CMoG will launch GlassBarge—a canal barge equipped with CMoG’s patented all-electric glassmaking equipment—in Brooklyn in May 2018.

Read more →