Session Schedule

Session Schedule

All sessions take place in the Auditorium of The Corning Museum of Glass, unless otherwise noted. Schedule is subject to change.

Rakow Research Library Hours (during Seminar only)
Friday 9am–7pm
Saturday 9am–5pm
Sunday 9am–12pm

Friday, October 18

8am
Registration/Coffee

If you wish to make your own bead during Seminar, please sign up at the registration desk.

9am
Welcome and New Acquisitions
Karol Wight, Executive Director and Curator of Ancient and Islamic Glass, The Corning Museum of Glass

9:30am
Explaining Historic Beads through Contemporary Glass Techniques*
Robert Liu
Founder and Co-editor, Ornament magazine

This lecture will emphasize significant historic glass beads, such as Chinese Warring States beads of the Zhou Dynasty, Roman mosaic beads, and Islamic glass beads. Where possible, Liu will relate what contemporary glass beadmakers have done to elucidate their construction.
*This lecture will be viewable via live stream. No registration or fee is required to watch this portion of the seminar. Connect to our Ustream channel on October 18 at 9:30am to watch.

10:30am
Coffee and Pastries

11am
Chevron Bead Stories
Mary Mullaney
Artist, Heron Glass

Chevron beads are visually, historically, and technically rich and complex. Using stories as the %%thread%%, this lecture will explore their colorful history. The discussion will include contemporary Chevron beads, their makers, and the layers of variation and ingenuity that make these classy beads unique and treasured.

11:30am
%%Bits%% of Glass, Pieces of the Past: Beads and Beadworking in West Africa
Christopher R. DeCorse
Professor of Anthropology, Syracuse University

This lecture examines the use, age, and origins of glass beads in West African cultures. The peoples of West Africa present a spectacular array of decorative arts, many of which incorporate beads. The beads used include many made of local materials: %%stone%%, bone, %%seeds%%, and shell. Some of the most spectacular, however, are beads made of glass, including both imported and locally made varieties. The majority of glass beads found in West Africa are from Europe but there were also significant imports from India, Asia, and the Near East, as well as several notable centers of African glass bead production. Beads are a tantalizing category of material culture, presenting countless varieties and a multitude of cultural expressions. Given the extraordinary detail of some, they can indeed be considered masterpieces of “Lilliputian art.” Although some beadmaking techniques remained virtually unchanged for centuries, thereby making dating a challenge, beads nevertheless offer an important resource for dating artifacts and establishing the chronology of archaeological sites. This lecture explores two major themes. It begins by briefly considering the use of beads in African cultures. It will then review the history and technology of glass beads with particular emphasis on recent data on West African glass bead manufacture.

12:30pm
Lunch (on your own)
Special Beadmaking Experiences
At The Studio
(12:30, 1, 1:30)

2pm
From Basket Making to Beadworking: An Examination of the Evolution of an Indigenous Art Form in the 19th-century Pacific Northwest
Alice Scherer
Founder of the Center for the Study of Beadwork

This lecture will showcase the woven beadwork of indigenous peoples of the greater Pacific Northwest, from northern California through Oregon and Washington and into British Columbia during the 19th and early 20th centuries. It will describe the evolution from the very early basketry-derived techniques to the point when Western-introduced beading looms and frames—and easier, more design-flexible bead embroidery—became the predominant forms of beadwork expression throughout much of the region. From Basket Making to Beadworking will place Northwest indigenous beadwork in the context of beadwork worldwide during the 19th century. Scherer also will discuss the importation of beads into the region during the British and American fur trading eras (1808 to about 1860) and the several-decades-long flood of American pioneers that followed relatively soon thereafter (1842 through about 1890). Each era had its stylistic effect on the native work of the time, as did the types of beads that flowed in. Beadwork from Northeastern Indians came in with the fur trappers and traders. The inspiration of their style of working was later subordinated to designs/methods imported via women pioneers and especially ladies magazines of the day. Further inspiration was supplied by printed designs on fabrics and wallpapers, as well as advertising images in newspapers and magazines, as the 19th century drew to a close and our hectic 20th century began.

2:45pm
Souvenir Beadwork of the Six-Nations Iroquois
Karlis Karklins
Editor, Beads: Journal of the Society of Bead Researchers

While many North American aboriginal peoples produced distinctive beadwork for personal use and for sale to tourists, one people that stand out for uniqueness of design, technique, and variety are the Haudenosaunee or Six-Nations Iroquois. Distinguished by the raised nature of the major design elements and the multitude of forms, their souvenir beadwork has been produced since at least the late 18th century and sold at tourist attractions like Niagara Falls, fairs, expositions, and other events. These items were eagerly purchased over the years by visitors who proudly brought their souvenirs home, whether they lived in Europe or in Canada and the United States. That these pieces were cherished is revealed by the large number that have survived to the present day.

3:30pm
Coffee

4pm
Beadmaking Demonstration
Kristina Logan

4:45pm
Special Beadmaking Experiences
At The Studio
(4:45, 5:15, 5:45, 6:15)

5–8pm
Add-a-Bead Art Walk
%%Gaffer%% District, Downtown Corning

Saturday, October 19

8am
Breakfast and Beadmaking

After having a continental breakfast, continue enjoying your coffee while watching a beadmaking demonstration (8:45) by the Museum’s premier bead artist.

8:45am
Dynamic Surface Pattern Techniques in Glass Beadmaking
Caitlin Hyde
Glass Artist and Flamework Demonstrator, The Corning Museum of Glass

Hyde will demonstrate a combination of flameworked glass shaping and color application techniques resulting in complex, graphic patterns on the bead surface.

9:30am
Bedazzled: Bead Embroidery in 20th-Century French Haute Couture
Michele Majer
Assistant Professor, European and American Clothing and Textiles
Bard Graduate Center: Decorative Arts, Design History, Material Culture

Throughout the 20th century, richly embroidered women’s dress was a hallmark of the French haute couture industry.  Primarily used to embellish evening wear, embroidery incorporating glass beads, sequins, and metal threads added texture, pattern, and glittering color to gowns, jackets, coats, and capes.  In addition to their in-house workshops, leading maisons de couture relied on specialist establishments such as Lesage and Rébé for high-end embroidery. Demanding highly skilled labor that made them both time-consuming and expensive, elaborately beaded garments represented the height of expert craftsmanship and luxury in dress associated with the French fashion industry.  Highlighting key designers and their creations, as well as embroidery houses, this talk will present an overview of bead embroidery in 20th-century French couture.

10:30am
Coffee

11am
Life on a String and Art in the Round: Contemporary Beaded Sculpture
Tina Oldknow
Curator of Modern Glass, The Corning Museum of Glass

Artists may approach the bead with various intentions—as decoration, texture, palette, or symbol—in the creation of abstract and representational works. In this lecture, sculpture by internationally known artists who incorporate beads or the bead form will be discussed, including Joyce Scott, Sherry Markovitz, Jean-Michel Othoniel, Liza Lou, and David Chatt.

11:30am
Diverse Artistry of Contemporary Beadmaking
Kristina Logan
Artist

Logan will offer an overview of the past 20 years of the contemporary glass bead movement. Her lecture will focus on aesthetic diversity and the wide range of techniques used today to make glass beads.

12:30pm
Lunch (on your own)
Special Beadmaking Experiences
At The Studio
(12:30, 1, 1:30)

2pm
Demonstration: Creation of Chevron Beads, from Bubble to Bead*
Ralph Mossman and Mary Mullaney
Artists, Heron Glass
At The Studio

This demonstration will show the various stages of creating a Chevron bead, from the hot, blown glass component, through the lapidary steps required to finish.
*This demonstration will be viewable via live stream. No registration or fee is required to watch this portion of the seminar. Connect to our Ustream channel on October 19 at 2pm to watch.

3:30pm
Special Beadmaking Experiences
At The Studio
(3:30, 4, 4:30)

6:30pm
BEADazzling Festivities
In the Museum

Cocktails and dinner at the Museum. Be sure to wear your beads.