Upcoming Exhibitions

Kensington Glass Works, Sailors Rights Flask (Turtle Whimsy), Philadelphia, 1826–32. Mold-blown soda-lime glass. Yale University Art Gallery, Mabel Brady Garvan Collection

A Nation Reflected: Stories in American Glass

  • March 29, 2019–September 29, 2019
For generations, glass—in its natural as well as manmade form—has been fashioned into objects of both beauty and utility. The development of glassmaking in America, beginning with the short-lived glasshouses in early seventeenth-century Jamestown, Virginia, has mirrored the expansion of colonial settlements into a thriving nation, and thus the medium offers captivating stories about many aspects of American history: Flasks and bottles emblazoned with portraits of politicians and celebrities signal the personal beliefs of those who used them; light bulbs, laboratory glass, and patented innovations bring technological sophistication into the home; and contemporary artists and craftsmen continue to reinterpret the medium’s rich past. Featuring more than 100 objects drawn from the Yale University Art Gallery’s collection with select loans from the Yale Peabody Museum of Natural History, A Nation Reflected: Stories in American Glass explores the myriad ways in which glass expresses the cultural, technological, and artistic aspirations of those who live and work in the United States.
Exhibition made possible by the Friends of American Arts at Yale Exhibition Fund, the Jane and Gerald Katcher Fund for Education, the John F. Wieland, Jr., B.A. 1988, Fund for Student Exhibitions, and the Nolen-Bradley Family Fund for Education. Organized by Yale University students Julia Carabatsos, MC ’20, Nolan Crawford, GH ’19, Lily Dodd, SM ’21, Adelaide Goodyear, B.A. 2018, Mari Melin-Corcoran, GH ’20, and Jocelyn Wickersham, ES ’19, under the mentorship of John Stuart Gordon, the Benjamin Attmore Hewitt Associate Curator of American Decorative Arts, with the assistance of Alexandra Ward, the Marcia Brady Tucker Fellow, Department of American Decorative Arts.

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