Studio art glass refers to handmade glass objects made by an individual or a small team of artists rather than mass-produced pieces that are part of a line of products. Glass artists, as they are known, include glassblowers, stained-glass artists, and people who practice various cold-working techniques, from sandblasting to engraving.

The American branch of this international movement is not that old, usually dated to 1962, when a University of Wisconsin-Madison ceramics professor named Harvey Littleton taught a glassblowing workshop at the Toledo Museum of Art. By that fall, Littleton was teaching glassblowing to his Madison students. Some of the biggest names in American studio glass would pass through Littleton’s program, including Dale Chihuly, Marvin Lipofsky, and Fritz Dreisbach.

At first, Littleton’s own work riffed on classic art-glass forms, but by the 1970s he was fusing, cutting, and polishing glass in an effort to almost freeze it in its molten state. The pieces he made as a part of his Arc series in the 1980s are perhaps his best-known works.

Marvin Lipofsky was equally influential, teaching glass to students at both the University of California, Berkeley, and at the California College of Arts and Crafts in Oakland, California, whose glass program he founded in 1967. Among his students were Dick Marquis and Benjamin Moore, both of whom were highly influenced—albeit in very different ways—by Italian art glass techniques associated with artisans working on the island of Murano.

For his part, Lipofsky’s work evolved into rounded shapes that were blown into molds and then cut and cold-worked later, in the tradition, if not the manner, of Littleton.

Meanwhile, on the east coast, Dale Chihuly graduated in 1969 from the glass program at Rhode Island School of Design in Providence. By 1971 he had helped found the Pilchuck Glass School near Seattle, Washington. There, in 1974, Moore met Chihuly, with whom he worked, on and off, along with Richard Royal, William Morris, Flora Mace, Joey Kirkpatrick, and other many other artists in the 1970s and ’80s.

After earning his own MFA from RISD and spending a couple of summers working at the Venini glass factory in Murano, Moore found his own aesthetic. Unlike Chihuly, who took his in...

Fritz Dreisbach also mined Italian techniques to create his art. In particular, Dreisbach excelled at using twisted, colored rods of glass—which are often sliced and then reformed to create murrine or millefiori pieces—as the foundations for impossibly heavy vases. At the other extreme, Dreisbach blew impossibly delicate crystal goblets that he’d festoon with his uniquely curious hot-worked decorations.

In recent years, a new crop of U.S. studio glass artists has achieved international recognition. Among them is Dante Marioni, whose technical precision and unerring sense of artistry can be seen in pieces such as his Reticello Leaf Vases from 2007.

About our sources | Got something to add?

▼ Expand to read the full article ▼

Best of the Web (“Hall of Fame”)

This fabulous site is a guide to Bohemian art glass makers from 1885 to 1920. Loetz was the premier Bohemian glass … [read review or visit site]

Cloud Glass Reference Site

Cloud Glass Reference Site

Chris and Val Stewart’s impressive attempt to create a complete catalogue of all known cloud glass, a decorative … [read review or visit site]

Antique Glass Salt and Sugar Shaker Club

Antique Glass Salt and Sugar Shaker Club

The heart of this website, home of the Antique Glass Salt and Sugar Shaker Club, is the Identification Project, whe… [read review or visit site]

Clubs & Associations

Discussion Forums

Other Great Reference Sites

Most watched eBay auctions    

Craig Zweifel 1999- Nine Inch Luster Glass Vase-in Mint Condition SignedPristine Jack Storms Glass Spectrum Cube / Never Offered On Ebay / Rare / L@@kCharles Lotton Ruby Multi Flora Vase 1983 - From Lotton BookIittala Finland Oiva Toikka 6” Glass Art Duck Bird Op Mallard Green Blue ScallopLundberg Studios Art Glass Flower Vase Twist Stem 1995Robert Eickholt Pulled Feather Studio Art Glass Vase, Signed 1993, BlueDramatic Signed Carl Radke Phoenix Studios Jack-in-the-pulpit Iridescent VaseStudio Blown Art Glass Amethyst Threaded Vine Leaf Iridescent Mantle Vase Jes NrArt Studio 1998 Signed Handblown Hand Crafted Standing Glass Fish SculptureRare Vintage Roland Correia 1973 Pulled Feather Ruffled Stem Glass GobletRollin Karg Large Art Glass Sculpture Killer!ex!Large Orient & Flume Iridescent Hawthorne Millefiori Artglass Vase Signed/labelCameo Carved Acid Cut Black Floral Art Nouveau Style White Satin Glass Vase JesSaul Alcaraz Pulled Feather VaseSigned Mystery Artist Emerald Green Iridescent Dolphin Whale Fish Glass Vase JesLundberg Art Glass Perfume BottleArthur Allison Glass Vintage Hand Blown & Signed Iridescent Vase Numbered 4223California Jon Bush Squared Cylinder Irridescent Pull Feather Studio Glass VaseSaul Alcaraz Jack In The Pulpit VaseSigned Rick Hunter Iridescent Art Glass Green Pulled Feather Vase 6"Simon Pearce Hand Blown Crystal Pair Hartland 5" Candlesticks Candle HoldersPair Of Simon Pearce Hartland Hand Blown Water/wine Glass Goblets Signed [#2]Levay Studio Hand Blown Art Glass Spider Web Iridescent Domed Paperweight Nr AlbLundberg Studios Iridescent Trumpet VaseSimon Pearce 10 3/4" Handmade Clear Crackle Glass Evergreen Fir Tree CollectibleLarge Tall Heavy Mid-century Retro Glass Beautiful Cobalt Blue Vase Hand Blown?Signed Lamb Intaglio Painted Art Glass Abstract Paperweight Sculpture Listed JesHand Blown Glass Art Wall Bowl/platter, Murano Style Complex Cane ProcessRare Hand Blown Glass Vase Sillars Spectacular Colors ~ Hand Blown Glass Art Vase ~ 18" Tall ~ Italian MurriniPair Of Simon Pearce Hartland Hand Blown Water/wine Glass Goblets Signed [#1]1992 Chicago Art Glass Jewell Cagj Rolling Irridescent Waves Vase Bowl WowCorreia Jack In The Pulpit Vase Large, BeautifulSimon Pearce 8 1/4" Handmade Clear Bubble Evergreen Fir Tree Signed CollectibleHiggins Glass Tree OrnamentStunning Signed Fiske 9 / 79 Pulled Feather Studio Art Glass Vase / PotRobert Held Studio Art Glass Vase, Signed 1993, Gold And Blue13" Emerald Green Glass Ruffled Rim Gold Dust Pulled Feather Mantle Vase Nr AlbPeggy Karr Art Glass Turkey Platter Oval, 18-inch With Original BoxJosh Simpson Planet 2001Peggy Karr Art Glass Small Plate - Bunny Rabbit With VioletsPeggy Karr Hearts Valentine Plate Platter 14 Inches Signed Retired MibVintage Blossom Blue Paperweight Orient & Flume Hard To Find Darker Blue 1984Rollin Karg Dichroic Glass Ball Sphere 5-inch Signed 2004 Blues Greens GoldsPeggy Karr Fused Glass Rare Egg PlatePeggy Karr Bunnies 14" Bunnies Platter 2 Annieglass Ruffled 9" Plates: Distressed Romangold Rim, SignedStunning Signed Fiske 8 / 79 Pulled Feather Studio Art Glass Vase / PotGreen Hand Blown Glass Hanging Wall Sculpture Murano Art Platter - Zac Gorell 5 1/2" Signed Hat Herb A Thomas Unusual Blue Iridescent Art Glass Perfume BottleStunning Signed Fiske 7 / 79 Pulled Feather Studio Art Glass Vase / PotSigned Peggy Karr Fused Art Glass Shamrocks Tray 6" X 10"1987 Steven Main Art Glass Canyon Perfume Bottle Main Glass Studio Artist SignedMid Century Modern American Studio Art Glass Tray Maurice Heaton Higgins Era ExAnnie Glass Art Glass Votive Holder: Handkerchief Fold, 24k Gold Rim, Signed 2 Annieglass Ruffled Dessert Bowls: Distressed Romangold Rim, SignedMid Century Art Deco Vtg Blue Smoke Glass 6" Cube Modernist Bud Vase DecanterSigned Mystery Artist Studio Hand Blown Cased Opaque Art Glass Fruit Center BowlDichroic Fused Art Glass Rectangle Pendant/cabochon Accent Tiles Diy KnobsHand Blown Glass Art Platter Bowl Beautiful Earthy Colors #729 Italian Murano