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    

Another Nice John Lotton Iridescent Vase6" Tall Vase Heavy Glass Signed Pink/ White / Black Studio Art Glass SignedSigned Mystery Artist Studio Art Glass Modernist Genie Lamp Perfume Bottle MehVintage Correia Studio Art Glass Sterling Silver Modernist Butterfly Brooch PinModernist Signed Steven Correia Studio Art Glass Sommerso Perfume Bottle Nr Meh**stunning** Signed Studio Art Glass *dragonfly*Large Signed Michael Nourot Art Glass Vase Oxblood Red Gold Aventurine AmericanVtg Signed Roger Roland Studio Art Glass King Tut Sommerso Perfume Bottle Nr MehSimon Pearce Handcrafted Glass Footed Bowl Signed Excellent Free Shipping Beautiful 8 1/2" Orient & Flume Iridescent Art Glass VaseLarge Thames Glass Speckled Blown Studio Art Glass Fish Sculpture FigureLot Set (2) Peggy Karr Red Geranium Flowers Fused Glass Plate Tray Signed UsaVintage Signed Orient & Flume Iridescent Pulled Feather Art Glass Vase Vintage Studio Art Glass, Zweifel Studios 1986 Luster Glass Vase 9 1/2'' TallSigned The Glass Forge 2015 Hand Blown Studio Art Bowl Large Multi ColorExquisite Robert Eickholt Signed Deep Sea Art Glass Vase 10 1/4 Large & Heavy Nr12 Point Spectacular Antique Purple Amethyst Crystal Glass Door Knob Set W ShankSigned Studio Paaan Hand Blown Orange Lemon Gold Swirled Art Glass Bottle Vase **stunning** Signed Studio Art Glass **milleflori**Orient And Flume Vase Bird Of Paradise Signed Beyers Sillars 10 Inches TallContemporary Art Glass Bowl Green W/ Aventurine Artist Signed 2004Mid Century Modern Mcm Modernist Studio Blown Amber Brown Bud Flower Glass VaseHand Blown Glass Art Wall Bowl/platter, Murano Style Complex Cane ProcessBlown Glass Vase Multicolored Signed Vines 2003Rainbow Hand Blown Glass Hanging Wall Sculpture Murano Art Platter - Zac Gorell Simon Pearce Ascutney Whiskey Glass Tumbler 8 Oz Wide Base Heavy Wide Rim UsaArt Glass Clear Heart Decoration W/ Pink Center By Luke Adams Vintage Mid Century Higgins Art Glass Piece. Lundberg Studios Glass Paperweight Vase 1979Signed Michael Nourot Studio Art Glass Vase W Gold FlakeRare 3d Lizard Millefiori Zellique Studio Joseph Morel Art Glass PaperweightJabo Joker Fall Frenzy Lot Over 210 Marbles Unsorted Box 3/4" Nos $0.99 Nr!Vtg 1987 Matthew Buechner Thames Studio Art Glass Vase Blue & ClearArt Glass Vase Iridescent Blue Signed JumathVintage Art Glass Perfume Bottle / Bud Vase Signed D. Bagwell 86'Red And Tan Art Glass Fish Pattern Vase, Signed P. BendanizVintage Vandermark Signed And Numbered Glass Art Glass Vase 1978 0443Art Glass Vase Iridescent Yellow Signed Elliott 1982Vintage Handmade Black Iridescent Art Glass Vase Sculptural Form Mcm Rainbow Michael Nourot 10" Studio Art Glass Vase Multi Chic Pink Vintage Signed Mn 1988 Vintage Artist Signed Multi-color Iridescent Pulled Feather Bowl VaseLast Chance Signed Dated Bagwell Abstract Art Glass Paperweight Vase NrStudio Hand Blown Iridescent Long Stem Exotic Lily Art Glass Flower Sculpture NrMid Century Higgins Art Glass Abstract Modern Dominick Labino Amethyst Bowl - Signed And DatedHand Blown Glass Art Bowl/vase/urn Purple Red Gold Aqua Green Pink Blue DirwoodRibbon Core Swirl Art Glass Large Marble Steven Maslach ???? With Globe StandWonderful Studio Handcrafted Art Glass **tentacles**Rare Peggy Karr Seashell Circular Bowl Blown Glass Ocean Beach Theme Dish 10.5"Peggy Karr Style Signed Mulit Colored Floral Fused Glass PlatePeggy Karr Glass Art Handcrafted Usa Poppy And Checkerboard 9.5 X 5.5 TrayVtg Signed Harry Robinson Blue & Green Pulled Feather Art Glass Vase 9.5" T WowRosetree Blown Glass Orange & Red Large Vase, New Orleans, SignedViz Art Glass Exquisite Abstract Floral Fan Shape Large Table Vase! Beautiful!!Studio Hand Crafted Iridescent Art Glass Tumbler Signed Esteban Prieto Set Of 3Millefiori Style Matt Finish Rose Bowl Squat VasePeggy Karr 8 1/2" Art Glass Plate 2003 Signed Tropical Fish & Coral Ocean SeaLarge Well Made Hand Blown Sommerso Art Glass Vase Sculpture2 Pcs Peggy Karr Stippled Art Glass Plates Daffodil & Strawberries19" Hand Made Glass Long Stem Rose From Corning Glass Corning Ny