Running the ribbon machine: Stories from the team

“It’s not a job, it’s a lifestyle.” That was how mechanical engineer Bill Kilmer described his work with the ribbon machine, a piece of equipment that could produce approximately 1,700 lightbulbs per minute.

Glass ribbon machine

Glass Ribbon Machine, Keller Technology Corporation; United States, New York, Buffalo, 1998. Metal; Overall H: about 250 cm, W: about 250 cm, D: about 2,300 cm. 2016.8.411. Gift of Ledvance, LLC.

The story of the ribbon machine is one of cutting edge technology, and of such successful mass production that Corning Glass Works became the premier supplier of incandescent light bulbs in the world. It is also a story about teamwork, camaraderie, loyalty, and unique human/machine interaction. “I lived with the machine,” said Kilmer. “The machine’s 24/7; anytime of the day or night it could be calling you.”

Bill Kilmer talking about the ribbon machine

Mechanical engineer Bill Kilmer said working with the
ribbon machine is “not a job, it’s a lifestyle.”

Kilmer worked at the Osram Sylvania glass manufacturing plant in Wellsboro, Pennsylvania, which closed last year. In July, a team from The Corning Museum of Glass visited the plant. We were there to observe the machine’s final start-up and capture the voices and memories of several veteran team members reflecting on the machine’s groundbreaking technology, the intricacies of operation, and the dedication of its operators. Read more →

Donor Profile: Mark and Kay Rogus

Kay and Mark Rogus

When he was young, Ennion Society member Mark Rogus collected sea glass as it washed ashore near his childhood home in Maine. For the first time, he saw glass through an artistic lens. He didn’t know it then, but Mark would later become heavily involved with The Corning Museum of Glass and eventually a collector of much more.

After graduating from Clemson University in South Carolina, Mark embarked on a career in finance that moved him around the U.S. and London before eventually settling in Corning with his wife, Kay. They were anticipating the arrival of their triplet daughters, Natalie, Emma and Charlotte, and the beautiful scenery of Upstate New York appealed to them as the perfect location to start a family. Corning Incorporated had been an early client of Mark’s, and he was familiar with the executive team and impressed by Corning’s remarkable history of innovation. It proved to be a perfect fit. He joined Corning Inc. in 1996 as manager of corporate finance and became senior vice president and treasurer in 2004. Mark is retiring from Corning this year after 21 years of service.

Kay and Mark Rogus looking at Forest Glass.

Kay and Mark Rogus looking at Forest Glass.

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The Corning Museum of Glass receives grants to Launch “GlassBarge”

GlassBarge. Rendering by McLaren Engineering Group.

GlassBarge. Rendering by McLaren Engineering Group.

The Corning Museum of Glass (CMoG) today announced the receipt of $469,625 in grants through Empire State Development’s I LOVE NEW YORK program, the New York State Canal Corporation, and New York State Council on the Arts (NYSCA), under Governor Andrew Cuomo’s Regional Economic Development Council initiative. This generous funding will support the launch of GlassBarge in commemoration of the 150th anniversary of the canal journey to bring glassmaking to Corning, New York, and will further CMoG’s participation in the statewide celebration of the Erie Canal Bicentennial.

In 1868, the Brooklyn Flint Glass Company relocated to Corning, via the New York Waterways, and evolved into the company that is today known as Corning Incorporated. In celebration of this pivotal journey, CMoG will launch GlassBarge—a canal barge equipped with CMoG’s patented all-electric glassmaking equipment—in Brooklyn in May 2018.

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The curious history of glass coins

Have you ever thought about all the metal in your piggy bank? The United States Mint certainly has.

“Here’s Why Uncle Sam Needs Your Scrap Metal Now!”, National Archives and Records Administration 514483

“Here’s Why Uncle Sam Needs
Your Scrap Metal Now!”,
National Archives and Records
Administration 514483

When the United States joined World War II in December 1941, the government worried about strategic reserves of metal, knowing that it would be a key resource for airplanes, weapons, food storage, and other essentials in the fight against Axis powers. Copper, tin, and nickel were especially important to the war effort, and mines could not keep up with demand. Patriotic citizens helped by participating in scrap metal drives, donating old farm equipment, cutting down iron fences, and even ripping bumpers off cars.

The United States Treasury was concerned that minting enough new coins to sustain the burgeoning economy diverted too much copper and tin from the war effort. In 1942 alone, the three U.S. Mints struck 206,698,000 pennies. At 3.11 grams each, that was enough scrap metal to make 40 27-ton tanks! Read more →

The Studio Announces 2018 Residency Recipients

2018 Artists-In-Residence at The Studio

Anne Vibeke Mou
March 22-April 20; Public lecture April 12

Anne Vibeke Mou, Diamond Window

Anne Vibeke Mou, Diamond Window

Originally from Denmark, artist and engraver Anne Vibeke Mou has been studying and working in the United Kingdom for almost 20 years. Her interests lie predominantly in the connections between glass and environment, object and place, and the medieval history of both regions has helped to shape her work in rich and revealing ways.

Mou practices a meticulous stippling process (engraving a surface with numerous small dots) using a handheld solitaire diamond tool. She is excited to access the Rakow Research Library’s resources to further her research into waldglas (forest glass) and historical sites of relevance. During her residency in March and April 2018, Mou will produce a series of delicate objects “containing traces of organic material from carefully chosen locations,” she says.

Read more →

The Corning Museum of Glass receives grants to Launch “GlassBarge”

GlassBarge. Rendering by McLaren Engineering Group.

GlassBarge. Rendering by McLaren Engineering Group.

The Corning Museum of Glass (CMoG) today announced the receipt of $469,625 in grants through Empire State Development’s I LOVE NEW YORK program, the New York State Canal Corporation, and New York State Council on the Arts (NYSCA), under Governor Andrew Cuomo’s Regional Economic Development Council initiative. This generous funding will support the launch of GlassBarge in commemoration of the 150th anniversary of the canal journey to bring glassmaking to Corning, New York, and will further CMoG’s participation in the statewide celebration of the Erie Canal Bicentennial.

In 1868, the Brooklyn Flint Glass Company relocated to Corning, via the New York Waterways, and evolved into the company that is today known as Corning Incorporated. In celebration of this pivotal journey, CMoG will launch GlassBarge—a canal barge equipped with CMoG’s patented all-electric glassmaking equipment—in Brooklyn in May 2018.

Read more →

Karen LaMonte selected for Specialty Glass Artist Residency Program awarded by The Corning Museum of Glass and Corning Incorporated

Nocturnes Installation in white bronze. Photography: Martin Polak. Provided by Karen LaMonte.

Nocturnes Installation in white bronze. Photography:
Martin Polak. Provided by Karen LaMonte.

The Corning Museum of Glass (CMoG) and Corning Incorporated (NYSE: GLW) announced today their selection of Karen LaMonte as the Specialty Glass Artist-in-Residence in 2018.

The residency is a joint program of the Museum and Corning that gives the selected artist access to specialty glass materials, scientists, and curators to experiment and explore new areas of their practice. LaMonte is the fifth specialty glass resident since the program’s inception in 2014. Her residency will begin on January 1 and will continue through the end of the year.

LaMonte is best known for her life-sized, ethereal glass dresses, which she casts in the Czech Republic, using the lost wax casting method. Her work employs translucent glass to show the division between our private selves and public personas, shaped by cultural and societal influences. She uses clothing as a metaphor for identity and to explore the human form in absentia. Read more →