The Mavens Visit the Corning Museum of Glass

​This month, ​Stacey and Jen found themselves in Corning, NY — the home of the Corning Museum of Glass.  ​Feel free to mosey on over to the blog post where we ​​detail our trip to​ the ​Finger Lakes​​ for TBEX North America.  ​Th​e purpose of ​THIS post is to showcase the sheer beauty of CMoG's glass collection and the ​​​eye-popping photos we ​​took while we were there. 

Glass is different thing to different people. At The Corning Museum of Glass, you will discover the many things glass can be.

​The first couple of days at the conference we didn't wander much​ beyond the gift s​hop that greeted us upon entering the ​building. ​Though the endless shelves of ​glass treasures was fabulous in and of itself, that by day 3​, we felt  we should probably carve out some time to check out the galleries.

Upon ascending the escalator to the galleries, I (Jen) noticed the towering Chihuly sculpture. Chihulyhas been one of my favourite artists ever since I saw an exhibit at the Museum of Fine Arts in Boston. I let out a squee every time I see one of his pieces, and this time was no different.

Jen with Chihuly at the Corning Museum of Glass

​ You can tell how happy I am in this pic, a feeling that ​persisted as we explored the museum. I also want to take this time to ​draw attention to ​my glass neckl​ace ​that was crafted by one of my ​besties, Lola Leo. I felt it was apropos to wear on this occasion.

The first gallery is a bright white hall that houses a collection of ​contemporary glass (1990​ - present). Upon entering the gallery it's immediately apparent that this ​space​, with its skylights that ​flood​ the room ​​with natural light,​ ha​s been designed with ​displaying glass in mind. ​

This 26,000 sq. ft.​ contemporary gallery of the Contemporary Art + Design Wing opened in 2015​ and is ​an absolute ​smorgasbord of photographing opportunities​. We especially loved the geometry created by the light diffusers on the ceiling.

Stacey would love for you to get married here and book her to come take the pictures​. Seriously, she would happily drive down from Ottawa for the opportunity.


Check-out ​Stacey's wedding photography at​.

Entering the Galleries at the Corning Museum of Glass

​To profile each of the pieces, as we originally wanted to, would be so time intensive that this blog post would never get written. Alternatively, we encourage you to check out the ​CMoG "GlassApp" web app​ to get up close and person​al with the collection​.

Where possible, we have linked the photos of the art pieces to their profile on the app. There, you can read detailed interpretations and watch video interviews with the museum’s experts.

Black chandelier "To Die Upon A Kiss"  at the Corning Museum of Glass
"I Saw Othello’s Visage in His Mind" at the Corning Museum of Glass
"Endeavor" at the Corning Museum of Glass
"Global Cities" at the Corning Museum of Glass
Broken chandlier "Carroña (Carrion)" at the Corning Museum of Glass
Crows discuss "Carroña (Carrion)"
Crow with broken glass from chandelier "Carroña (Carrion)"
Untitled (White) at CMoG

​We spent a lot of ​time in this gallery​, yet there ​​​a​re still not enough hours in ​one morning to ​give each work of art the amount of attention it deserve​s. With SO MUCH beauty to ​behold ​how could ​anyone possibly ​do so? Well, we tried! And now we have these fab photos to look back on and remember.

Jen touring the Corning Museum of Glass at TBEX
Virtue of Blue
Butterfly chandelier "Virtue of Blue" at the Corning Museum of Glass
Lynx After a Sketchbook Page by Albrecht Durer
Glass Tire at the CMoG
"Sheer Volume" at the Corning Museum of Glass

​This is a less-than-perfect photo from ​my cellphone (Jen), but I ​really wanted to share ​this piece. I just LOVED how the distressed (frosted?) portions of the panels placed together create an illusion of a ghostly object within. It might be one of my faves. Credit: "Sheer Volume" by Michael Scheiner.

Cool cube at the Corning Museum of Glass
Jen in a glass cube
Chandelier at CMoG

​There was hot debate ​​between the Mavens whether or not we liked this one. Stacey was a "yey", I was a "not-so-much". However, one can certainly appreciate it's juxtaposition ​to the slats on the ceiling.

​​We continued to move back in time through  the contemporary art galleries to 1975-2000. ​Here we only scratched the surface of the treasures this portion of the museum ​holds (NOT literally, obviously).

Gallery at the Corning Museum of Glass
Texture everywhere at the Corning Museum of Glass
Illuminati glass art at the Corning Museum of Glass
Blue and yellow triagleat the Corning Museum of Glass
Glass Mural at the Corning Museum of Glass
Stacey taking pics at the Corning Museum of Glass
Upclose of the mural at the Corning Museum of Glass

​Themes of geometry​ and colour blocking were found throughout this gallery​. It's pretty safe to say that this period was a time of experimentation and of "​thinking outside the box", ​as they say. Clearly this art paved the way for ​the works we explored in the previous gallery, taking us far beyond the age of stain​ed glass​, crystal bowls, and ​​fancy vases - not that there's anything wrong with ​the classics (as you will soon see)!

Glass head at the Corning Museum of Glass
Crystal ball at the Corning Museum of Glass
Glass dress at the Corning Museum of Glass
Frog face at the Corning Museum of Glass

​With the delightful weirdness of the 70s, 80s, and 90s behind us, we moved back in time just about as far as ​we could go. We're talking Egyptians and Greeks and clay tablets​. Behold selections from the gallery dubbed "35 Centuries of Glass". ​

Ancient Egyptian Glass at the Corning Museum of Glass
Ancient glass formula at the Corning Museum of Glass
Ancient Vases at the Corning Museum of Glass

​What you see above is an ancient​ clay tablet ​with instructions ​for how to make glass. Isn't it ​fascinating how glass holds its colour over the centuries? That blue is just STUNNING. We were also particularly fond of the ancient opalescent objects. ​If I were queen I would have ordered an entire set.

You'll have to pardon me as we move along​;  I lost the timeline wandering the maze-like ​halls of centuries old treasures.

Jen taking pics at the Corning Museum of Glass
A dainty glass at the Corning Museum of Glass
Teeny tiny glass at the Corning Museum of Glass
Paperweights of the World gallery at the Corning Museum of Glass
Paperweight at the Corning Museum of Glass
Under the ocean paperweight

That's right folks, there is an entire display dedicated solely to paperweights. Teeny tiny worlds all of their own — from around the world!

Stain glass at the Corning Museum of Glass

Here's the story with these pics. I was marvelling at this centuries old work of art and decided it would be a good idea to grab a selfie. Well folks, it happened​: I STUMBLED!

I managed to balance myself on the wall surrounding the piece and didn't fall into the window. Phewf! No harm, no foul.

Relieved, I took the pic, but as I was doing so, I could hear it crackling ever so slightly behind me. My weight on the wall must have given it a shiver, and in that moment, I was convinced that the whole thing was going to shatter! It didn’t (thank goodness), but you can clearly see the panic and fear on my face during that split second when I thought it would.

Thus, with a little bit more ​pep in my step, I scurried away to find Stacey​ in the next gallery.​

Ancient galleries at the Corning Museum of Glass

I am going to take this moment to give major props the people at CMoG and the meticulous attention they have given to the detail of the layout of their galleries.

Exploring the spaces gave you a sense of discovery and wonder.

Just when we thought there couldn’t possibly be more to see, we turned a corner to find a whole new collection of treasures. It truly gives you an appreciation for the versatility of glass and the many ways in which it can be re-imagined.

Mermaid at the Corning Museum of Glass
Sculpture of Glass Blowing from the Cornign Museum of Glass
Lamps at the Corning Museum of Glass

​An ode to lamps. Maven Jess would have LOVED this section. She has a keen appreciation for a good lamp.

Infinite blue creatures at the Corning Museum of Glass
Glass Curtain at the Corning Museum of Glass
Glass Curtain Upclose at the Corning Museum of Glass

Back in the 60s you would have found this glass curtain hanging in the lobby of a department store in Manhattan. In those days, it was suspended above a pool filled with fish. Altogether this thing weighs over 3000lbs.

​​What you've seen so far is just a mere FRACTION of the things ​you can find in this ​wing. There is an entire ​"Study ​Gallery"​ with display case​s FILLED with glass objects that you find in everyday life. For studying, one would assume.

Marbles at the Corning Museum of Glass

​That said, if I shared every picture we ​​took, this post would never end​​. Thus, we move along.

You sketch it, we make it at the Corning Museum of Glass

​As you go from gallery to gallery, you can find curiosities displayed throughout the museum. I think what I love most about this place​ is how interactive and hands-on it can be. How fun would it be to see your creation come to life in the form of a glass sculpture​ as this lucky patron did? FABULOS! (​Monocle and all)

​It's not all pretty sculptures and display cases at the CMoG. ​One of the highlights is the ​ hands-on learning at the "​Innovation Center"​, an entire ​section focused on​ the science of glass. The nerd in me was all a-quiver. 

Sound orb thing at the Corning Museum of Glass
Periodic Table at the Corning Museum of Glass
Periodic table at the Corning Museum of Glass

​A periodic table made of glass bottles!

Failed experiment at the Corning Museum of Glass

​A failed experiment. ​This was supposed to be a lens for a giant telescope (like the Hubble Space Telescope). Instead of ​removing it from the site, or disposing of it, ​they built the ​museum around it. You can see right through to the gift shop on the floor below. Brilliant!

Guess how many casseroles?
Casserole Tower at the Corning Museum of Glass

​Did we ever figure out how many, Stacey?

​And there you have it! ​A relatively small sampling of the beauty and wonder you can find at the Corning Museum of Glass. 

Before I sign off, I want to give an extra special THANK YOU to Maven Stacey for being the photographer extraordinaire that she is. Being behind the lens means ​​that our audience doesn’t get to see much more of Stacey than my sneaky mobile phone pics, which consist mostly of shots of the back of her head. And so, I’ll leave you with these. Isn’t she gorgeous?

Stacey at CMoG
Stacey taking a self-portrait
Upside-down Stacey at the Corning Museum of Glass

​See more of her work​ here on the Haven Mavens blog and on our Instagram feed. When she's not out adventuring with us, she's shooting weddings. ​Check out the Stacey Stewar​t Photography website ​for more samples of her work! 

Butterfly texture for @JenUnderscore_
Mechanical texture for @JenUnderscore_
Red splat texture for @JenUnderscore_
Stain Glass texture for @JenUnderscore_
Urn texture for @JenUnderscore_
Angel texture for @JenUnderscore_
Stainglass texture texture for @JenUnderscore_
Colourful glass texture for @JenUnderscore_
Face texture for @JenUnderscore_

Disclaimer: Some of the photographs ​in this blog post are heavily edited shots from my mobile phone. While Stacey did what professional photographers do with her fancy schmancy Nikon, I had my humble Samsung in hand and snapped some (many) shots for my personal Instagram feed, the focus of which is #textures I encounter from day-to-day.  The textures​ at CMoG made my head explode! ​You should follow me if you're in to that sort of thing. 

Can’t get enough of that good stuff? Check out the blog post about our trip to​ ​Finger Lakes​ Wine Country​ for TBEX North America