Art glass is both decorative and useful. The functionality of an art glass item sets it apart from glass art. The following items are practical objects that also please the eye.
Stained Glass Windows
Stained glass decorates the walls of venerated churches steeped in history across European countries. Architects have taken a modern twist on the traditional art form by plating ceilings with stained glass. The translucent ceilings amplify the beauty of a fine summer’s day, dancing coloured rays of light into large rooms, such as in the Chapel of Thanksgiving, located in Dallas, Texas. In this building constructed in 1976, panes of stained glass form a mesmerizing spiral to inspire true awe in its followers.
Leadlights are similar to glass windows, except they tend to be simpler in design and used in commercial and domestic applications. A classic Jan Vermeer painting depicts a woman touching the frame of a leadlight, showing the beauty of this everyday glasswork. The Karlstad Cathedral in Sweden showcases a modern take on the leadlight. Each piece is supported by a lead came and appears transparent, but a closer inspection reveals a pattern of subtly coloured panes.
Toyota commissioned the French artist Rene Jules Lalique to make a glass hood ornament, which stands on display at the Toyota Automobile Museum in Nagakute, Japan. Noted for his naturalistic style, the small-sized artwork is suited for displaying the simple slopes and curves of a horse’s majestic head. Lalique established a large gallery of his work, since he was prolific. The Horse, as it’s called, is a prime example of art and commerce intersecting perfectly.
Louis Comfort Tiffany Vases
Tiffany designed vases that can found on display at museums across the world. His career began as a painter and he later adapted glass as a canvas, as demonstrated in this vase which is currently held by the Musee d’Orsay. His elegant works contain gold flecks. Other vases take on ambitious shapes, like the one displayed at the Metropolitan Museum of Art. He pioneered a style called favrile glass, which influenced glasswork and can be found at the roots of current glass art.
Robert C. Fritz’s work was seminal in the movement of studio glass from the sixties. The vase takes an unconventional shape. The standard function is challenged by its amorphous and strange features. Groundbreaking in its day, Fritz’s style is best described today as retro.
Believe it or not, art glass can be worked into sporting trophies, though the cost may prohibit the average person incorporating in their trophy design.