Monday, November 3, 2014

The Corning Glass Museum Experience

     I first visited the Corning Glass Museum in the early 1970's.  My mother had heard the museum  had a large collection of early American pattern glass and she wanted to see it.  Back then it was a small museum with one long wall of floor to ceiling glass panels.  Inside the small space, there were rows and rows of glass cabinets filled with pattern glass.  The lower level was occupied by the Steuben Glass Studio and museum. In 2014, I took my daughter to see the museum and it has changed a lot since that first visit. Now, it is a very large museum with a world renowned fabulous glass collection.
     The Corning Museum of Glass was a gift to the people of American to commemorated the one hundredth anniversary of the Corning Glass Works and was designed to tell the story of glass.  That was in 1951 and by 1978 the museum had out grown its space.  A new addition was designed with a library and galleries and the new museum opened to the public in 1980. By 1990, the museum was again out of space and a 65 million expansion project was undertaken to increase the efficiency of visitor flow and to expand gallery space.  And the museum just continues to expand.  No sooner was an expansion project completed another  project was started.  Now under construction is the North Wing Expansion scheduled to be completed soon.
     Today the Corning Museum of Glass tells the story of 35 centuries of glass from around the world. It also contains specialized galleries like the Frederick Carder Gallery, a gifted designer who oversaw the Steuben Glass Works.  Tiffany, Galle, Loetz, Daum Nancy, Lalique and many many other outstanding glass manufacturers are also featured. Your senses are overwhelmed as your eyes moves from one outstanding piece of glass to the next.

 The Contemporary Gallery features stunning works from artists from around the world. 

There is a special exhibit gallery that was featuring breathtaking pieces from the artist Rene Lalique when we visited this fall, including design drawings and a video showing glass production in his studio in the 1930's.

The Innovation Center is a big display area featuring many interesting facts and hands on activities concerning glass.

The Glass Market is massive and fills the entire first floor of the museum.  It is a feast for the eyes where you can purchase almost anything your hearts desires that is made of glass.

If you love beautiful glass you will love the Corning Glass Museum.

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