THE STUDIO GLASS GALLERY
During the 20th century, glass was largely made in factories with the complex machinery of mass production. In the 1940s, 1950s and 1960s in the United States, artists Edris Eckhardt, Maurice Heaton and Frances and Michael Higgins, experimented with glassmaking in their own private studios. Their sculptural and functional work ranged in technique from slumping to pate de verre. Along with other artists who were working in glass in Europe, these four American artists are considered forerunners of the Studio Glass Movement.
In 1962, a workshop was held at the Toledo Museum of Art, led by potter Harvey Littleton and glass scientist, Dominic Labino. With the assistance of glassblower Harvey Leafgreen, the small group built a furnace, melted glass, watched glassblowing demonstrations and tried creating their own glass pieces. The workshop was so successful, a second was held that same year. The purpose of the second workshop was to introduce the material glass to artists and craftsmen; to design and test equipment which the artists could construct themselves; to investigate techniques; and to look at education possibilities within secondary, college, and university systems. From these small beginnings sprang the American Studio Glass Movement. Today, more than forty years later, glass has been transformed from a utilitarian medium into sculptural art.
CREATIVE GLASS CENTER OF AMERICA
The Creative Glass Center of America was established at Wheaton Village in 1983. The competitive fellowship program offers artists the opportunity to work together in an environment of creativity and interaction. CGCA has become an internationally known resource for glass artists, offering support facilities, resources and funds. More than two hundred artists from all over the world have participated in the program. Each artist gives a piece created during their fellowship to the museum to document their stay.