The Lunder Center galleries are closed today, July 17.

Fragile Beauty

Treasures from the Corning Museum of Glass

July 4, 2024–October 27, 2024

Fragile Beauty

Maker Unknown, China

Deep Flaring Bowl on Wooden Stand

19th century, purple glass; blown, carved; carved wood. Corning Museum of Glass, Corning, New York, Gift of Mr. Howard C. Hollis. 64.6.2

For thousands of years, glassmakers have combined sand, minerals, heat, and air to create utilitarian and decorative objects. Drawn from the vast collection of the Corning Museum of Glass in Corning, New York, Fragile Beauty: Treasures from the Corning Museum of Glass demonstrates how makers from across time and around the globe have taken inspiration from plants, animals, and other aspects of nature to create dazzling objects. Some twenty-eight objects or pairs ranging in time from antiquity to the present dazzle the senses and show a remarkable breadth of color, technique, form, and function. Highlights of the selection include glass from the legendary Venetian island of Murano; enameled glass made in early modern Europe and India; objects blown, cut, carved, assembled, and otherwise crafted with astonishingly varied techniques; Art Nouveau glass by artists including Louis Comfort Tiffany, René Lalique, and Steuben; and works by contemporary American and Asian glass artists.

Set in the evocative light-filled space of the Clark’s Michael Conforti Pavilion, each object provides a unique encounter with color, form, and pattern. Together these objects show the range of creative expression glass artists have achieved.

Fragile Beauty: Treasures from the Corning Museum of Glass is organized by the Clark Art Institute and curated by Kathleen Morris, Sylvia and Leonard Marx Director of Collections and Exhibitions and curator of decorative arts.
Generous support for this exhibition is provided by Robert D. Kraus, Doris Fischer Malesardi, the S & L Marx Foundation, and Carol and Richard Seltzer.