Installing Tiffany’s Glass Mosaics

As soon as the Fragile Legacy exhibition closed in January, the Museum’s exhibition and collections staff switched gears to prepare for our current exhibition, Tiffany’s Glass Mosaics. It took two weeks to remove, or de-install, the popular Blaschka exhibition. Then, over the next three months, staff began to prepare the Special Exhibitions Gallery for the much-anticipated Tiffany show. This work included creating all new walls and decks, core drilling the concrete floor to add power and data for digital interactives, and raising a section of ceiling to accommodate the large Tiffany column. Installation of objects, photographs, and labels for Tiffany’s Glass Mosaics took approximately four weeks, and more than 40 Museum staff — including collections management, curatorial, conservation, digital, graphics, and lighting departments — working alongside loan couriers and contractors. Here’s an inside peek at what went on behind-the-scenes.

Drywall is in, floors have been repaired and cleaned and the walls are ready for mud and paint.Drywall is in, floors have been repaired and cleaned and the walls are ready for mud and paint.

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CMoG announces new David Whitehouse Artist Residency for Research

Former executive director David Whitehouse (1941-2013)

Former executive director
David Whitehouse (1941-2013)

The Corning Museum of Glass (CMoG) recently announced a new research residency program for artists, which will allow them to utilize the Museum’s resources, including the permanent collections and the holdings of the Rakow Research Library, to inform their practice. Named for CMoG’s former executive director, The David Whitehouse Artist Residency for Research will enable artists to be in residence for up to three weeks to explore materials at the Rakow Library, the world’s foremost library on the art and history of glass and glassmaking, and to use the other extraordinary scholarly resources available at the Museum, including the knowledgeable staff who work in all parts of the organization. This residency will be focused on research, whereas CMoG’s two other residencies are geared toward artists creating new work.

“This residency is the first of its kind at The Corning Museum of Glass,” said Amy Schwartz, director of The Studio, CMoG’s internationally renowned glassmaking facility. “It was inspired by the number of artists who have told us that they want to spend time at CMoG just looking, thinking, and taking advantage of all things glass that we offer.” Read more →

The people of Thatcher Glass

This post is written by Thatcher project digitization assistant Christina Baker. Read more about the Thatcher project and collection in previous posts.

Front page of newsletter

The front page of the November 1920 issue
of Thatcher News.

We wake up every day to make breakfast, brew our coffee, and get ready for the workday. Every week we go to our jobs and we see the same people. We form bonds and we consider these coworkers our work family. We celebrate births and we celebrate retirements. One person’s achievement becomes good news for all. For the people of Thatcher Glass, those bonds were unbreakable, and the transition from the workday to their home lives was seamless.

While cataloging this collection, I came upon a series of newsletters entitled Thatcher News. It was published every month and was full of stories, reports, jokes, updates from the employees, etc. When I read the first issue, I considered Thatcher News like any other employee newsletter. But I was wrong, and that was made clear by the time I had finished reading the first few issues.

In each issue, we learn about the daily lives of these “Thatcherites” and their families. There were birth announcements and announcements of beloved workers leaving for other opportunities outside Thatcher. Occasionally there was mourning for the passing of a longtime Thatcherite, met with heartfelt words and their picture in that issue. Updates on Thatcherite children were common, along with family photos. Many times new workers were welcomed with their family’s portrait being featured in the newsletter along with a congratulations on the new job. Read more →

Glass eye smuggling? Yes, it was a thing!

Upon entering the Rakow Research Library’s current exhibition, Curious and Curiouser: Surprising Finds from the Rakow Library, you may soon have the curious sensation of being watched. Just inside, and glancing to the right, you’ll discover a fascinating poster depicting row upon row of human eyes! Not real flesh-and-blood eyeballs, mind you, but rather an advertiser’s depiction of every imaginable color and style of glass eye prosthetics available in 1891. It will be hard to avert your gaze from the actual glass samples displayed in a velvet-lined box just below the poster. They were meticulously handcrafted by skilled glass workers and are eerily realistic.

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The Studio Announces 2017 Artists-in-Residence

Martin Janecky
February 13-March 20; Public lecture on March 9

Study of the Dia De Los Muertos, at Corning Museum of Glass 2016. By Martin Janecky.

Study of the Día De Los Muertos, at Corning
Museum of Glass 2016. By Martin Janecky.

Martin Janecky began his career with glass at the age of 13 and later explored sculpting methods in the Czech Republic. Janecky teaches and demonstrates around the world, including at The Studio. In March 2016, he was an Artist-in-Residence, during which time he experimented with opaline glass made at The Studio to further his sculptural work. The following week he was a Guest Artist in the Amphitheater Hot Shop, and created a body of work inspired by the Mexican holiday Día de Los Muertos (the Day of the Dead). Read more →

CMoG to make waves with GlassBarge

Here at The Corning Museum of Glass, our mission is to tell the world about an incredible material that captivates and excites us all—namely, glass! In order to fulfill that mission, we don’t wait for the world to come to us—although 460,000 visitors made their way to Corning last year—we take our story out into the world.

The Corning Museum of Glass Road Show in Seattle, Wash.

The Corning Museum of Glass Road Show in Seattle, Wash.

In 2002, we launched the Hot Glass Roadshow, a project that converted a semi-trailer into a fully-functioning glassmaking studio on wheels. We also transformed a standard shipping container into a studio space. This unique equipment and its small footprint make it possible for CMoG to deploy glassmaking to nearly any environment. Our first deployment was the Winter Olympics in Salt Lake City and, since then, our mobile hot shops have traveled the world stopping in places like Paris, Seattle, South Australia, and New York City. We’ve even circumnavigated the globe aboard Celebrity Cruises, a partnership that began in 2008, and one that enables us to tell the story of glass at sea. Read more →

Corning Museum of Glass Unveils 2016 Rakow Commission by Thaddeus Wolfe

Stacked Grid Structure by Thaddeus Wolfe

Stacked Grid Structure
Thaddeus Wolfe (American, born 1979)
Made in United States, Brooklyn, New York, 2016
Mold-blown glass with brass inclusions
2016.4.9, 31st Rakow Commission

The Corning Museum of Glass unveiled Stacked Grid Structure, this year’s Rakow Commission by Brooklyn-based American artist Thaddeus Wolfe.

Wolfe creates multi-layered, highly-textured, angular mold-blown vessels, sculptures, and lighting fixtures. Stacked Grid Structure, like Wolfe’s other objects, was made by blowing glass into a one-time-use plaster silica mold cast over a carved Styrofoam positive. Creating his molds in this way enables Wolfe to force the material into structures that are at odds with the fluid nature of molten glass.

Stacked Grid Structure is the perfect artifact of its time,” said Susie Silbert, curator of modern and contemporary glass. “A bold and inventively made object, it bridges craft, design, and art in its production, conception, and ambition, exemplifying the blurred boundaries that make contemporary glass such an exciting field today.” Read more →