Feature Articles

February 2011

Asheville Art Museum Features Exhibition on WNC Studio Glass

Asheville Art Museum in Asheville, NC, will present the exhibit, Fire on the Mountain: Studio Glass in Western North Carolina, on view in the East Wing Gallery from Feb. 29 through May 27, 2012.

The exhibition examines the first 30 years of the Studio Glass movement and its ties to WNC, providing an overview of the aesthetic and technical developments of the movement and focusing upon early Studio Glass pioneers who have lived and worked in WNC since the 1960s.

In 1962, ceramist Harvey Littleton and glass researcher Dominick Labino offered two workshops at the Toledo Museum of Art where they demonstrated the innovative use of a small, inexpensive furnace in which glass could be melted and worked, an affordable process making it possible for the first time for individual artists to blow glass in their own studios. These workshops marked the birth of the American Studio Glass movement. Following the workshops, Littleton began offering glassblowing classes at the University of Wisconsin in Madison, eventually attracting and teaching such well-known artists as Marvin Lipofsky and Dale Chihuly.

From its early days to the present, Western North Carolina has provided a nurturing environment for glass students and glass artists. Penland School of Crafts in Penland, NC, continues to offer a range of classes in Studio Glass. Today, many of the artists involved early in the movement, such as Mark Peiser, William Bernstein, Ken Carder and Richard Ritter, among others, still live and work in the region and have been joined by a host of younger glass artists who have since moved to WNC for work and study. Together, these artists continue to carry out the important traditions of Studio Glass that contribute greatly to the aesthetic and cultural heritage of the region.

This exhibition was organized by the Asheville Art Museum with support provided by the Mary Duke Biddle Foundation.

For further information check our NC Institutional Gallery listings, call the Museum at 828/253-3227 or visit (www.ashevilleart.org).


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