Corning Museum of Glass

When researching this week’s topic for a blog, I wanted to approach the innovation of glass but I wasn’t sure at what scale. A student mentioned in class that there are a few museums that use tinted glass for aesthetic purposes. This inspired me to look further into museums, a topic I wish I had more opportunity to study. The Corning Museum of Glass in New York most definitely caught my eye. The opening page of their website reads “You can explore every facet of glass at the Corning Museum of Glass. See more than 35 centuries of glass artistry…” This was an extremely successful advertising technique because it quickly my attention. Not in the sense that one can see multiple facets, but 35 centuries worth? Count me in, history fascinates me.

Exterior, curtain wall

This museum takes visitors through a tour of collection galleries, which showcase over 3500 years of glass. It ends with the “Glass Innovation Center” which offers an interactive look at the way new discoveries have changed the world. I did not realize how much glass really has been altered over the years. This museum uses glass not only for construction of the structure itself, but also the interior floors and display cases. The website advertises a 300 foot bridge that connects three floating pavilions. As discussed in class, this must change the comfort level of visitors as they are walking from one elevated translucent material to the next.

One of the most interesting aspects of glass, according to Corning, is how it reacts with light. From the first telescope to the latest in fiber optical communication, the history of optics is how light has been communicated  Although this seems to be going off topic, I would like to address the fact that glass is used for a myriad of purposes. Glass has helped make new discoveries scientifically and made travel safer. Corning is currently working on developing a highly engineered specialty glass used as a cover for electronic devices. Corning really has approached glass from every aspect and I look forward to what they discover next.


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