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

Cylinder of Window Glass (Family App)
Video

One traditional way of making flat window glass was to start with a large cylinder like this one, cut off the ends, cut it lengthwise, and heat it in a kiln until it flattened. Gift of JE Springer.

Lišková Anthem of Joy in Glass (Family App)
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.

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.

Cup with Gladiators (Technique- Family Tour)
Video

Listen as glass artist William Gudenrath describes the technique used to make this cup with gladiators on it. Much like today, sports fans enjoyed drinking from cups decorated with pictures of their heroes. This cup is decorated with pictures of famous gladiators.

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

Mechanical Glass Theater (Family App)
Video

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 levers that allowed them to be moved.

King Amenhotep II- Family
Video

This small masterpiece is a 3500-year-old portrait of an Egyptian king. Under certain conditions, glass "weathers" (deteriorates). When it was new, the head was deep blue. Centuries of burial have altered the surface to a stone-like tan color.

American Glass- Family
Video

This display of glass produced in America in the 18th and 19th centuries includes useful objects made in the 1700s, fancy art glass of the late 19th century, and glass for windows, lighting devices, and storage jars.

Toso Chess Set- Family Technique
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.

English Folding Screen- Family
Video

This screen, made in London, England, is decorated with birds, frogs, and fish—even a spider and a butterfly. Sixteen birds are shown; 13 are easy to spot, but three are more difficult. How many can you find? Clara S. Peck Endowment.

Corning Cutting Shop- Family
Video

In the cutting room, a steam-powered shaft drove belts that turned the metal or stone cutting wheels. A glasscutter holds the object against the rotating wheel, which is fed with an abrasive slurry.

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.

Gallé Dragonfly Coupe- Family
Video

Emile Gallé was an artist of genius, a poet, and a horticulturalist. He designed remarkable glass, ceramics, and furniture. The huge dragonfly that adorns this chalice-like coupe reflects Gallé's profound love of nature. Gift in part of Benedict Silverman, in memory of Gerry Lou Silverman.

Mace/Kirkpatrick Large Fruits- Family
Video

Learn more about "Still Life with Plum" by American artists Flora Mace and Joey Kirkpatrick.

Quagliata Melancholia- Family
Video

This image of a man sitting in an airplane and gazing out of the window evokes feelings of sadness and loss. Who or what did he leave behind? What does the future hold at his destination?

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.

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.

Ruffner Shirts, Cherries, and Snowflakes, of Course- Family
Video

Learn more about "Shirts, Cherries, and Snowflakes, of Course" by American artist Ginny Ruffner.

Modern Glass- Family
Video

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

LaMonte Evening Dress- Family
Video

Learn more about "Evening Dress with Shawl" by American artist Karen LaMonte. This five-part cast-glass sculpture is hollow, but suggests a body inside the dress.

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.

Whimsies- Family
Video

Whimsies are what modern collectors call pieces that were made by individual glassmakers for fun or for show. Glassmakers would make these after their regular work shifts.

Punch Bowl- Family
Video

Between 1880 and 1915, more cut glass was made in Corning, New York, than anywhere else in the country. This punch bowl was made here by local glasscutters.

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.

Tiffany Landscape Window- Family
Video

This window, decorated with hollyhocks, trumpet vines and wisteria, came from a mansion overlooking the Hudson River.

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.

Steuben Cascade Wall- Family
Video

Cascade Wall was designed by George Thompson and made in Corning by Steuben Glass for its New York City showroom. When it was installed in the showroom in 1959, it had a reflecting pool at the bottom. Gift of Steuben Glass, Inc.

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.

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.

Ancient Egyptian Furnace- Family
Video

This is a full-scale model of half an Egyptian glass furnace. The original is more than 3500 years old.

Pages