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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Tagliapietra Endeavor
Video

Listen as curator Tina Oldknow, describes Endeavor  by Italian artist Lino Tagliapietra. A sense of weightlessness characterizes this instillation of 18 boatlike forms. Inspired by the sight of the many gondolas that gather at the entrance of the Venetian lagoon on the feast day of the Ascension of

Ewer with Lion Mask
Video

Listen as curator Dedo von Kerssenbrock-Krosigk describes this Venetian ewer, made with milk glass canes and decorated with applied lion-mask prunts (small ornaments that are like medallions stuck to the outside of a vessel). Differently patterned milk glass canes were and are used to make glass

Gallé Dragonfly Coupe- Family
Video

Emile Gallé was an artist, 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.

Cage Cup
Video

Listen as curator David Whitehouse describes a Roman cage cup. Cage cups are the most exclusive luxury glasses made in the later Roman Empire. They date from about AD 250 to the mid-fourth century. Cutting and grinding a single thick-walled blank was a laborious and risky process. If just one mesh

Reynolds Family Matter- Family
Video

Listen as curator Tina Oldknow describes the object Family Matter by American artist Jill Reynolds.

Rummer with Raven Seal- Technique
Video

Listen as glass artist William Gudenrath describes the technique used to make this Ravenscroft goblet. In March 1674, the English glassmaker George Ravenscroft applied for a patent to make colorless lead glass. Unfortunately, this glass was prone to crizzling, a chemical instability that results in

Hilton Innerland
Video

Listen as curator Tina Oldknow describes Innerland, designed by glass artist Eric Hilton and executed at Steuben Glass, Inc. This piece is a multi-part sculpture that expresses designer Eric Hilton's concept of the unity of life and of the "inner being, or inner land, which is shared by

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.

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

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

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.

Harry Allen at GlassLab Cooper-Hewitt, 2008
Video

Harry Allen at GlassLab at the Cooper-Hewitt, National Design Museum, May 17-June 3, 2008. A program of The Corning Museum of Glass, GlassLab brings designers together with glassmakers to offer them rare access to experimenting with hot glass and prototyping their design concepts.

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.

Lipofsky California Loop Series
Video

Learn more about California Loop Series  by artist Marvin Lipofsky.

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.

Ewer Signed by Ennion
Video

Listen as curator David Whitehouse describes an ewer signed by Ennion. The discovery that vessels could be formed and decorated by inflating a gob of glass in a mold permitted large numbers of virtually identical objects to be produced quickly and inexpensively. The first-century Roman writer Pliny

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.

Core Formed Vase- Technique
Video

Listen as glass artist William Gudenrath describes the technique of making a core-formed vessel. The technique of core forming, which was introduced around the middle of the 16th century BC, was used to fashion some of the first glass vessels. Core forming involves the application of glass to a

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.

Cut and Gilded Vase
Video

Listen as curator Jane Shadel Spillman describes Cut and Gilded Vase produced by William Leighton. This cut and gilded vase, blown from four layers of glass (colorless, red, green, and opaque white), is very Bohemian in appearance. However, it was made at the New England Glass Company. William

Plum Woven Heaven
Video

Listen as curator Tina Oldknow, describes the object Woven Heaven, Tangled Earth by artist Susan Plum. For Susan Plum, glass is a metaphor for light. She works with it as a way, she says, to "concretize the invisible." Plum prefers borosilicate glass for its high silica content and its

Ribbon Glass Cup
Video

Listen as curator David Whitehouse describes a ribbon glass cup, a new variety of mosaic glass introduced in the first century BC. It was "ribbon" mosaic, and the ornament consisted mainly of lengths (not slices) of canes arranged in geometric patterns. This concave-sided cup is a typical

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.

King Amenhotep II
Video

Listen as curator David Whitehouse describes the glass portrait of King Amenhotep II. Ancient glass sculpture is very rare. This is one of the earliest known glass portraits. It probably shows the head of Amenhotep II, who was ruler of Egypt about 60 years before Tutankhamen. The craft of

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

Mosaic Glass Tabletop
Video

Listen as curator David Whitehouse describes this elaborate mosaic glass tabletop. The tabletop was submitted by the papal government to the Paris Exposition Universelle, in 1867. It consists of a large disk of white marble, inlaid in the pietra dura technique. The more than 2000 glass pieces

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