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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Flameworked Beads
Video

Flameworking (sometimes called "lampworking") is the process of directing a flame onto a piece of glass in order to create form or decoration. Beads were likely among the first glass objects to be made by flameworking.

Flameworking Glass Sculptures
Video

Learn about flameworking with Corning Museum of Glass experts. Flameworking is the technique of taking glass rods or tubes and heating them in a concentrated flame until they become soft.

Chunk Casting
Video

Chunks of glass are placed in a mold, then heated in a kiln until the glass softens and flows downward to gradually fill the mold. Popular with contemporary artists, this method avoids the need for a giant melting furnace filled with molten glass.

Coloring Objects
Video

Five different methods of using colored glass are demonstrated; some produce a uniformly colored object, others a splotchy or mottled effect. Glass artists today use whatever method best suits their aesthetic choices.

Bowl with Roman Foot and Folded Edge
Video

Roman glassworkers, tirelessly creative and inventive, were fond of folding and manipulating inflated glass in a variety of ways for different purposes. Two of their characteristic structures—both functional and beautiful—are demonstrated.

Master Class 7: Beadmaking with Kristina Logan (excerpt)
Video

Kristina Logan is internationally recognized for her precisely patterned, delicate glass beads, which she combines with metalwork to create jewelry and functional objects. In the Master Class video, Logan demonstrates her process of beadmaking at the torch, finishing the glass by cold-working, and

Cameo Glass
Video

Discover the history of Roman cameo glass, and lean how it is made, with experts at the Corning Museum of Glass. This video was featured in the exhibit "Reflecting Antiquity" at The Corning Museum of Glass, February 15- May 27, 2008.

Glass Jug inside of a Jug
Video

Watch experts at the Corning Museum of Glass recreate one of the stranger glass pieces made in Roman times- a jug inside of another, larger jug! This video was featured in the exhibit "Reflecting Antiquity" at The Corning Museum of Glass, February 15- May 27, 2008.

Pâte de Verre
Video

This is another casting technique that—like glassblowing—only works with glass. Whereas glassblowing was invented about 50 BC, pâte de verre is a process invented in France in the 19th century. It allows subtle gradations of color, possible with no other glassworking process.

Flameworked Vessels
Video

Beginning in the 1800s, glassworkers used flameworking to make vessels considerably larger than previously possible. Bigger and more sophisticated torches allowed the increase in scale, while retaining the flameworker's ability to create minute details.

Cracking Off
Video

As if glassblowing wasn't fast enough—it takes under three minutes to make a Roman bottle—cracking-off made the process even faster. This technique was well known by AD 20 or so, and cut the manufacturing time of simple tumblers in half.

Making Iridized Glass
Video

Learn about ancient iridized glass and a method for creating iridized glass surfaces. This video was featured in the exhibit "Reflecting Antiquity" at The Corning Museum of Glass, February 15- May 27, 2008. Note: the method portrayed uses stannous chloride fumes, which can be highly toxic

Cane Making
Video

While glass canes can be used alone, for example as stirring rods, usually they are incorporated in vessels or sculpture. An infinite variety of decoration is possible. Here we see two examples that are intended to be viewed from the side.

Building a Goblet on a Blowpipe
Video

Here is virtuoso Venetian-style glassblowing "without a net." One mistake and all is lost! Where "making a goblet from parts" allows mistakes to be isolated and destroyed, this process moves relentlessly forward, allowing no retakes.

Fusing and Slumping
Video

Popular among glass artists today, as it was in the golden age of Greece and the Roman Empire, this technique softens and shapes glass in a kiln. Various preparatory steps are shown in the making of a contemporary sculpture.

Prince Rupert's Drop
Video

Don't try this at home! A classic demonstration involving exploding glass: it spectacularly shows both the great strength and vulnerability of glass that has been rapidly cooled from the molten state.

Learn About Glass Enameling
Video

It could have been so simple...but it wasn't! Until recent times (about 1800), permanent enamels had to be fired on glass vessels by an amazingly laborious process, shown here. Today, the process really is as easy as it looks.

Master Class 4: Pâte de verre with Shin-ichi and Kimiake Higuchi
Video

This DVD focuses on glass artists from Japan who use the pate de verre technique to form intimate glass sculptures that express a love of nature. Kimiake Higuchi demonstrates the making of a cabbage leaf, while her husband, Shin-ichi, produces a mosaic piece. Although they have no formal training

Solder vs. Glass Rod
Video

See what really sets glass apart from metal and then begin to understand why humans have invented such odd ways of shaping it while hot: core-forming, fusing, slumping, and—oddest of all—glassblowing.

Glass Masters at Work: Mark Matthews
Video

Mark Matthews is renowned for the impressive range of techniques he uses to produce complex geometric patterns and realistic interpretations of animal pelts within glass spheres. For his marbles, Matthews draws heavily from historical influences that span the 3,500-year history of glassmaking. The

Glass Blowing
Video

Discover the history and process of glass blowing with experts at the Corning Museum of Glass.

Medieval Goblet
Video

Arguably the most beautiful medieval glass vessel to survive, this goblet is also original. It is probably the invention of one glassblower who took the secret of its manufacture to his grave. See this extraordinarily elegant process, not rediscovered until the 20th century.

Master Class 5: Flameworking with Cesare Toffolo
Video

In this video, Cesare Toffolo makes both a simple footed bowl and an intricate historical goblet. He hosts a brief tour of flameworked objects in the collection of The Corning Museum of Glass, and he shares his philosophy of teaching, learning, and creating. Cesare Toffolo is considered to be the

Liquid Fusion: Glass Design Workshop at Boisbuchet, 2006
Video

Liquid Fusion: Glass Design Workshop is an annual workshop CMOG conducts with the Vitra Museum at Domain de Boisbuchet, in Lessac, France. Film by Deidi von Schaewen, editing by Giona Messina.

Glass Masters at Work: Lino Tagliepietra
Video

Award-winning documentary filmmaker Robin Lehman catches the drama and intensity of maestro Lino Tagliapietra creating his inventive works in glass. Filmed at The Studio of The Corning Museum of Glass during a special, private workshop and dramatically set to music for a dazzling sensory experience

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

Core Forming
Video

This was the common method of making small glass vessels from around 1500 BC until the discovery of glassblowing. Dung, clay, and glass came together in a seemingly odd process that was indispensable for more than a millennium and a half.

Optic Molding
Video

This technique was invented by Roman glassworkers. It was indispensable in glasshouses of the Middle Ages and flourished in Venice. Also known as dip molding, it remains popular today.

Tom Patti- Voices of Contemporary Glass
Video

Tom Patti explains his unique approach to working with glass. Voices of Contemporary Glass: The Heineman Collection at The Corning Museum of Glass, May 16, 2009-- January 2, 2011.

GlassLab at Design Miami 2007
Video

A Collaboration of The Corning Museum of Glass + Vitra Design Museum. GLASSLAB brings the ancient processes and skills of glassmaking together with creative and innovative minds in the design world. Contemporary designers, working with Corning Museum of Glass glassmakers in a unique mobile hot

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