Warning message

Due to the winter storm projections, The Corning Museum of Glass will operate under a three-hour delay and will be open from noon to 5 pm on Sunday, January 20. The Rakow Library will be closed. The Museum and Library will return to normal hours and full operations on Monday, January 21 at 9 am.

All About Glass

All About Glass

This is your resource for exploring various topics in glass: delve deeper with this collection of articles, multimedia, and virtual books all about glass. Content is frequently added to the area, so check back for new items. If you have a topic you'd like to see covered, send us your suggestion. If you have a specific question, Ask a Glass Question at our Rakow Research Library.

Pages

Marioni Chartreuse Pair- Family
Video

This particular type of pitcher is modeled after an ancient civilization in Italy called the Etruscans. It's called a becco di oca, which means "goose beak" in Italian.

Glass Slipper- Family
Video

The glass slipper was made in Corning, New York, to be worn in a movie about Cinderella. The movie was never made, so the slipper was never worn. Gift of Corning Glass Works.

Bird-shaped Vessel (Technique- Family App)
Video

Listen as glass artist William Gudenrath describes the techniques used to make this bird-shaped vessel. This was an ancient Roman form of packaging. It was filled with perfume, then the tail was sealed by heating it in a flame. To extract the perfume, the user broke off the tip of the tail.

Mechanical Glass Theater (Technique- Family App)
Video

Listen as glass artist William Gudenrath describes the technique used to make this mechanical glass theater. This miniature theater shows the Wedding at Cana. Look closely and you can see that it is made of shells, rock crystal, fabric, and pieces of glass. Some of the figures are attached to

The Morgan Cup- Family
Video

This cup is named for JP Morgan, the famous banker who once owned it. It is the only known ancient Roman cameo glass vessel that has survived intact. The scene shows worshippers at a shrine.

Toso Chess Set- Family
Video

The pieces in Gianni Toso's Chess Set, made in about 1981, are in the form of Jewish and Roman Catholic worshippers. The kings are a rabbi and a bishop. The tiny details of the figures were made by softening glass in a flame and molding it into the desired shapes.

Engraving Lathe- Family Technique
Video

Traditional glass engravers use copper wheels mounted on a lathe. The wheels come in many shapes and sizes. An abrasive slurry drips onto the wheel as the engraver works on the design.

Marquis Marquiscarpa- Family
Video

Listen as curator Tina Oldknow describes Marquiscarpa by American artist Richard Marquis. Using techniques that originated in Italy, Marquis pays homage to the great Italian designer Carlo Scarpa.

Lišková Anthem of Joy in Glass- Family
Video

Anthem of Joy was created by the Czech designer Věra Liškova. It was made by softening, inflating, and manipulating tubes of borosilicate glass (like Pyrex) over a torch. The individual parts were assembled by fusing. Gift of Art Centrum.

Bird-shaped Vessel (Family App)
Video

This was an ancient Roman form of packaging. It was filled with perfume, then the tail was sealed by heating it in a flame. To extract the perfume, the user broke off the tip of the tail. 

Yoruba Crown- Family
Video

People have decorated with glass beads for hundreds of years. This crown was made in Nigeria in the mid-20th century.

Libenský Installation- Family
Video

Listen as curator Tina Oldknow describes Meteor, Flower, Bird by Czech artists Stanislav Libenský and Jaroslava Brychtová. Libenský and Brychtová convey three messages with this sculpture: Meteor, on the left, represents Corning as an international center for the study of glass; the flower, in the

Karel Black Cube- Family
Video

Listen as curator Tina Oldknow describes Black Cube by Czech artist Marian Karel. Despite its name, Black Cube is not really a cube. Each side slightly bulges as though there is some sort of energy pushing the walls outward.

Warrior Vase- Family
Video

This unusually large piece of cameo glass is filled with action! The scene of warriors fighting is taken from a medieval Chinese story.

McElheny Untitled (White)- Family
Video

Listen as curator Tina Oldknow describes Untitled (White) by American artist Josiah McElheny, who reproduced well-known modern designs in opaque white glass. He pays homage to classic 20th-century design.

Bottle with Handles- Family
Video

The discovery of glassblowing was the second most important event in the history of glassmaking after the discovery of glass itself. Because of the ease and speed of manufacture, blown glass vessels began to be used in daily life.

Ancient Egyptian Furnace- Family
Video

This is a full-scale model of half an Egyptian glass furnace. The original is more than 3,500 years old.

McElheny Untitled (White)- Family Technique
Video

Listen as glass artist William Gudenrath describes the techniques American artist Josiah McElheny used to create Untitled (White). McElheny reproduced well-known modern designs in opaque white glass. He pays homage to classic 20th-century design.

Three Citrus Fruits (Family App)
Video

The Venetians were clever glassmakers. They could make bowls, goblets, and decorative objects such as these citrus fruits, which were meant to be suspended as ornaments.

Engraving Lathe- Family
Video

Traditional glass engravers use copper wheels mounted on a lathe. The wheels come in many shapes and sizes. An abrasive slurry drips onto the wheel as the engraver works on the design.

The Corning Ewer Technique- Family
Video

Listen as glass artist William Gudenrath describes the technique used to create the Corning Ewer, one of the finest pieces of cut glass in the entire Museum. The eggshell-thin colorless glass was covered with a green overlay. After cooling, the green was partly carved away to create the decoration.

Wright Playhouse Window- Family
Video

Architect Frank Lloyd Wright designed this window for the "Playhouse," a kindergarten with a stage, at the Coonley Residence in Riverside, Illinois. The design, with its flag and colorful balloons, was inspired by parades. Clara S. Peck Endowment Purchase.

Uncut Crown of Glass (Family App)
Video

One traditional way of making flat glass was to open a bubble of molten glass as if to make a bowl. Using centrifugal force, the glassblower would spin the heated bowl and it would open into a flat disk.

Beaded Basket (Family App)
Video

Beadwork like this was popular in 17th-century England. A wire frame was formed and decorated with thousands of seed beads.

Cup with Gladiators (Family Tour)
Video

Much like today, sports fans throughout history have enjoyed drinking from cups decorated with pictures of their heroes. This cup is decorated with pictures of famous gladiators.

Egyptian Inlay- Family
Video

Many pieces go together to make this portrait of an ancient Egyptian. Every piece is glass, except one. Can you tell which piece is not made of glass?

Modern Glass- Family
Video

Learn about the ways that glass artists have used artistic expression in the Museum's Modern Glass Gallery.

Core Formed Vase Technique- Family
Video

Listen as glass artist William Gudenrath describes the technique of making a core-formed vessel. Ancient glassmakers discovered a technique called core forming. A core was formed from dung and clay, then dried. The core was covered with glass. After cooling, the core was scraped out. The bottles

Core Formed Vase- Family
Video

Ancient glassmakers discovered a technique called core forming. A core was formed from dung and clay, then dried. The core was covered with glass. After cooling, the core was scraped out. The bottles were used for perfume and cosmetics.

Glass Harmonica Technique (Family App)
Video

Listen as glass artist William Gudenrath describes how this glass harmonica was made. Benjamin Franklin invented this strange musical instrument. It was popular in the late 18th century. Sounds were made by running moistened fingers along the rims of the glasses. Some people were afraid that this

Pages