Edris Eckhardt Visionary & Innovator in American Studio Ceramics & Glass Essays by Kirk J. Nelson and Henry Adams Cleveland, OH: Cleveland Artists Foundation, 2006 Soft cover catalog, 48 pages
In 2006 NBMOG participated in a major retrospective of work by pioneer studio glass artist Edris Eckhardt (b.1905, d.1998). The retrospective was held in Cleveland, OH and organized by the Cleveland Artist Foundation. NBMOG loaned several important items to the show and contributed the essay "Edris Eckhardt in Perspective" to the accompanying catalog. Four examples from the NBMOG collection were illustrated and discussed: the cast glass sculpture "Three Fates" (1972), the glass penwork panel "March 22" (1968), and the gold glass panels "Angel of the Morning" (1964) and "Midnight Bouquet" (1970). NBMOG is grateful to collector and Eckhardt scholar Joseph Kisvardai for his assistance with this project. Mr. Kisvardai also was instrumental in helping to organize an exhibition of Eckhardt's work mounted by the Museum in 1996 at Bradford College in Bradford, MA. He introduced museum director Kirk Nelson to many Cleveland-area collectors and others interested in the artist's work, including Ms. Eckhardt herself, who was 91 years old at the time. Since then Mr. Kisvardai has been generous in sharing his knowledge and enthusiasm and has helped NBMOG develop its comprehensive collection of Eckhardt glass.
"Three Fates" Edris Eckhardt Cleveland, OH, 1972 H: 12 5/8" NBMOG Collection Ex. Coll. Dr. Paul Nelson Museum Purchase Acc. 1998.077
Richard La Londe: Fused Glass Art and Technique by Richard La Londe Freeland, WA: Ozone Press, 2006 Hard cover, 223 pages
NBMOG supplied author and glass artist Richard La Londe with photographs of two works from its collection for publication in La Londe's informative book about fused glass. "Midnight Bouquet" and "Three Fates," both by studio glass pioneer Edris Eckhardt, are illustrated on pages 31 and 33 respectively. In his first chapter, "Part 1: History," La Londe discusses the use by Eckhardt and other artists of kiln-fusing techniques in the 1950s. The production of Maurice Heaton and Frances and Michael Higgins is considered, along with work by less well-known artists Earl McCutchen, Glen Lukens, Russell Day and Ruth Dahlberg. Later chapters illustrate La Londe's own work and discuss in great technical detail the processes and equipment he employs. The book also provides appendices listing glass and equipment suppiers, workshop firing schedules, and a Bullseye Glass Company annealing temperature charts. An attractive and highly useful study from the informed perspective of the artist!
"Wood Lamp Patterns from the New Bedford Museum of Glass" by Kirk J. Nelson The Rushlight (Vol. 73, No. 4, December 2007) pp. 2-8
In 2006 NBMOG purchased a group of 27 wood patterns used about 1850 by glass manufacturers to make metal molds for pressing glass. The patterns once belonged to the late Vincent Ortello, noted glass dealer and past president of the Westchester chapter of the National American Glass Club. Previously they were featured in an undated pamphlet published by antiques dealer Bernadine Forgett in the early 1960s. Nelson reviews the basis for the attribution of the patterns to Sandwich and discusses their role in the mold making process. He notes that the term "pattern" does not refer to the decorative design carved into the wood, but rather to the object's function as a full-size pattern or model for a 3-dimensional item to be pressed in glass. Patterns represent the most creative moment in the design process for this glass, when imagination and hand craftsmanship meet to make later mechanized production possible. Each was individually turned and carved, and each is unique. For this reason they represent an invaluable resource for the study of mold-making and glass pressing technology. This is particularly true when one considers that almost all the actual molds used for pressing glass during this period were scrapped or otherwise lost and no longer survive to inform our study.
"Kate Greenaway Glass"
by Kirk J. Nelson The Mt. Washington & Pairpoint Glass Society Newsletter (Vol. 13, Issues 1&2, Spring/Summer 2008) pp. 1-14
Mr. Nelson's article is the first comprehensive study of Kate Greenaway motifs used to ornament Mt. Washington glass. Click Kate Greenaway to learn more about this English artist and how her international popularity was expressed in the decorative arts. Click Greenaway Motif Catalog to see all the known Greenaway motifs appearing on glass, including the design from which the detail to the left was taken.
Mt. Washington Glass Co. Display at the Centennial Exhibition (detail) Stereopticon Card, 1876 L: 7" NBMOG Collection Rockwell Library Gift: The Shirley Papers Acc. 2005.253.088
"More Mt. Washington Glass at the Centennial Exhibition" by Kirk J. Nelson The Glass Club Bulletin (No. 206, Autumn 2006) pp. 9-15
The late Kenneth M. Wilson, in his epic study Mt. Washington & Pairpoint Glass (Woodbridge, Suffolk, England: Antique Collectors' Club, 2005), makes extensive use of documents descending in the family of Mt. Washington Glass Company agent Frederick S. Shirley. These documents were donated to NBMOG in 2005. Known as the Shirley Papers, they hold surprises that even Mr. Wilson did not uncover. One is a remarkable photograph of the Mt. Washington Glass Company's booth display at the Centennial Exhibition in Philadelphia. It shows the company's celebrated Crystal Toilet Table (see illustration to left), for which only a written description was available to Wilson when he published his book. Nelson discusses this and other highlights of the Shirley family gift, including the original medal awarded to the company and official floor plans showing the location of the company's two display areas. In the preceding issue of the Glass Club Bulletin (No. 205, Summer 2006), Nelson's article "A Remarkable Discovery from the Shirley Papers" illustrates and discusses another exciting photograph, this one showing the the glass company's extraordinary 17-foot high Centennial Fountain. Both photographs will be published in vol. 2 of Wilson's study, which is being completed by Jane Shadel Spillman, Curator of American Glass at the Corning Museum of Glass.