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.

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Coalbourne Hill Glass Works
Article

The third English Company that made furniture for the Indian market was located in the Stourbridge area. This factory had been built early in the 19th century, and it was purchased by Joseph Webb in 1850. He was a cousin of Thomas Webb, owner of the famous glass firm of Thomas Webb & Sons, and

Jonas Defries & Sons
Article

One of the largest but least-known 19th-century English glass firms is Jonas Defries & Sons, which was located in the Houndsditch section of London from 1856 until the early 20th century. The company operated under various names for at least a century (an 1880 advertisement says that it was

F.& C. Osler
Article

F.& C. Osler was probably the largest European company that supplied glass objects to India. Its products sold there included both table wares and lighting devices. During the last quarter of the 1800s and the early years of the following century, Osler also made glass fountains and furniture

The Eastern Connection
Article

In the 19th century, at the very time when glassmakers were improving their skill in fashioning and annealing the large pieces that would be needed to create furniture, the number of contacts between Europe and countries to the east was increasing, and both England and France were expanding their

Glass Furniture in the 19th Century
Article

Today, it is not at all unusual to find glass tables and cabinets, as well as large glass lighting devices. But in the second half of the 19th century, when glass was first used in furniture on a commercial basis, it would have been truly remarkable to see such objects. The development of glass

Portland Vase Iconography
Article

The Portland Vase is the best-known ancient Roman cameo glass vessel. It is in the collection of the British Museum in London. For some pieces of art, the meaning of a figural scheme is clear; in others, the interpretation takes years to decipher; and in the %%case%% of the Portland Vase, scholars

Catalogue of table glass ware, lamps, &c. / manufactured by National Glass Company, Pittsburgh, PA., U.S.A. operating McKee & Bros. Glass Works, Jeannette, Pa.
Library

National Glass Company, Pittsburgh, PA, USA, manufacturer. McKee & Brothers, manufacturer. 110922 Catalogue of table ware, lamps, chimneys and general glassware, plain and decorated 142 numbered pages, 6 unnumbered pages: illustrations (some color); 33 x 48 cm National Glass Company Index in

From a Broken Flask: Laminated Safety Glass
Article

Edouard Benedictus, a set and costume designer for a French theater, wanted to make glass safer. He was disturbed by reports of people being disfigured by broken windshield glass during automobile accidents. How could windshields be made less dangerous? He recalled a curious incident that had

Travels of the Glass Pilgrim: Davide Salvadore
Video

Museum demonstration supervisor and glass artist Eric Goldschmidt travels the world to gain deeper insight into the art, craft, science, history, and future of glass and the culture that surrounds the material. On a visit to Murano, he talked with Davide Salvadore.

Travels of the Glass Pilgrim: Moreno Bardella
Video

Museum demonstration supervisor and glass artist Eric Goldschmidt travels the world to gain deeper insight into the art, craft, science, history, and future of glass and the culture that surrounds the material. On a visit to Murano, he watched as Moreno Bardella demonstrated his skills as a

Travels of the Glass Pilgrim: Marco Salvadore
Video

Museum demonstration supervisor and glass artist Eric Goldschmidt travels the world to gain deeper insight into the art, craft, science, history, and future of glass and the culture that surrounds the material. On a visit to Murano, he spoke with glassmaker Marco Salvadore about his work.

Artist-in-Residence: Maria Bang Espersen
Video

Danish artist Maria Bang Espersen works to expand the viewer's perspective through her work in glass. By stretching and bending the molten material, her sculptures show a frozen movement, while the glass retains a soft look. In her March 2013 Residency at The Studio, Espersen explored movement

Studio Demonstrations: Jiří Harcuba
Video

Watch Jiří Harcuba demonstrate for his Studio course, Glass Carving, Engraving, and Cold Construction, how to engrave glass blocks and vessels with stone, diamond, silicon carbide, and copper wheels. Students learned various cutting methods and investigated the optical effects of reflections in

Master Class 3: Engraving on Glass with Jiří Harcuba
Video

The Czech artist Jiří Harcuba shows how he engraves with diamond, stone, and copper wheels, creating innovative portraiture on glass with the highest level of craftsmanship. He talks about his life, his work, and his interest in philosophy and psychological studies of major figures. He also

Masters of Studio Glass: Jiří Harcuba
Video

Jiří Harcuba is a widely respected artist and educator whose specialty is portraiture in engraved glass. Whether the subjects of his portraits are friends, renowned artists, or historical personalities, Harcuba treats them all in a similar fashion, using spare sculptural cuts and subtle optical

The Blaschkas from the Lampworker's Perspective
Video

Eric Goldschmidt, Properties of Glass Supervisor at The Corning Museum of Glass, and artist Wesley Fleming pair up to explore the lampworking techniques of Leopold and Rudolf Blaschka in this lecture and demonstration. Eric and Wes create glass sea creatures, both duplicating some of the Blaschkas’

Live-streamed Studio Demonstration: Davide Fuin (July 29, 2015)
Video

Watch as Davide Fuin demonstrated for his class, Advanced Venetian Glassblowing, Venetian team-working skills, goblet making, and how to create historical reproduction pieces. Note: There is no final image of the piece made in the demo this week because, unfortunately, it broke.

Max Erlacher oral history interview- Rakow Research Library
Video

This clip is from an interview with Max Erlacher, former master engraver for Steuben, interviewed May 2010. Max Erlacher was born in Innsbruck, Austria. As a young man he attended a glass technical school to learn the craft of glass engraving. Upon the completion of training, he worked in Vienna

Studio Demonstrations: Max Erlacher
Video

Watch Max Erlacher demonstrate for his Studio course, Engraving and Cold Working Techniques, in which this master engraver shares his knowledge of copper, stone, and diamond engraving, and cold working techniques. Max Erlacher has more than 40 years of experience with copper, stone, diamond

Live-streamed Studio Demonstration: Ben Dombey
Video

Watch as Ben Dombey demonstrates for his class, Smarter Bubbles, how to develop a deeper understanding of the material and a more practical approach to glassworking.

Meet the 2014 Rakow Commission Artist: Amber Cowan
Video

Hear a lecture from the 2014 Rakow Commission artist Amber Cowan. In her sculptures, Cowan flameworks, fuses, and hot-sculpts recycled, upcycled, and second-life glass–usually American pressed.

Amber Cowan: 2014 Rakow Commission Artist
Video

Artist Amber Cowan discusses her work and the 2014 Rakow Commission, Garden of the Forgotten and Extinct.

Glass Masters at Work: Vittorio Costantini
Video

Vittorio Costantini is a Venetian glass master known for his precisely rendered small flameworked sculptures. He is inspired by nature, and he works with a range of subjects, including multi-colored insects, butterflies, birds, fish, and flowers. Costantini's pieces are celebrated for their

Robin Cass at 2300°: Girlfriends (March 2013)
Video

2300°: Girlfriends featured visiting Rochester, N.Y., glass artist and RIT professor Robin Cass, and a team of her students. Watch as she works with her team to create a form that highlights glass as a material. Cass studied at the Rhode Island School of Design, became inspired by glass, and got

Lighting the Way: Fresnel Lens
Article

The most dangerous part of a sailing trip used to be returning to shore. Lighthouses were built to signal the safest route, but often the weak light from their lamps was not visible until too late. The large, thick lens that was supposed to project the light absorbed much of the signal.  Hollowing

Behind the Glass | New Discoveries in Early Nigerian Glassmaking
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Newly discovered glass beads, crucible fragments, and raw glass from Ile-Ife, Nigeria, provide evidence for a massive workshop making glass beads for West Africans one thousand years ago. Previously, glass beads in Africa were thought to be made from glass imported from Europe, but Dr. Abidemi

GlassLab Design Session: Tom Scott
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Designer Tom Scott describes working at GlassLab during a design session at The Corning Museum of Glass, July 24 and 25, 2012.

Making Window Glass by Hand: Crown & Cylinder Glass
Article

When you think of a window, you think of a flat piece of glass. But window glass didn’t always start out flat. It once began as a massive bubble on the end of a glassblower’s pipe. To flatten the bubble, the glassblower could spin it rapidly into a huge disk called a crown. After it was cool, the

Gold Ruby Glass
Article

Gold ruby is arguably one of the most beautiful colors of glass. Beyond its aesthetic qualities, there is an alchemical connotation: Since ancient Greek times, descriptions of the sorcerers’ stone agree that it was believed to be a red substance and the key to the transmutation of metals,

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