Asian Artists in Crystal from Steuben Glass
January 18 – February 19, 1956
Ground Floor, Galleries G-9 through G-13
This exhibition is no longer on view at the National Gallery.
Overview: 36 decorative glass objects were shown, engraved with designs by artists from 16 countries in the Far and Near East. Searching for new production designs, the president and vice-president of Steuben Glass sent the curator of prints at the New York Public Library on a 2-year trip throughout Asia to commission drawings from native artists. Some of these were then transposed to a variety of glass objects and engraved by American craftsmen. The drawings, subsequently given to the New York Public Library, were included in the exhibition. Also shown were works by contemporary American glassmakers lent by the Corning Museum of Glass.
The display cases were provided and installed by Steuben Glass; the company also supplied posters. Representatives came with chaperons from the Fifth Avenue showroom to be in attendance within the exhibition and talk to visitors about the glass. As the first loan exhibition of decorative arts at the Gallery, the show generated comments from those who believed this subject should remain outside the Gallery's field of activity. The exhibition was sent overseas for a 2-year tour to the home countries of the participating artists, opening in Seoul, Korea, and ending in Cairo, Egypt. A duplicate set of the drawings was shown at the Corning Glass Center; the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York; Marshall Field and Co., Chicago; Gump's in San Francisco; and other stores carrying Steuben Glass.
President Dwight Eisenhower, accompanied by his appointments secretary, spent 35 minutes viewing the exhibition.
Catalog: Asian Artists in Crystal: Designs by Contemporary Asian Artists Engraved on Steuben Crystal, by Karel Kup and John Montieth Gates. New York: Steuben Glass, Inc., 1956.
Brochure: Asian Artists in Crystal: Designs by Contemporary Asian Artists Engraved on Steuben Crystal, by Arthur A. Houghton, Jr.
Drawings by Contemporary Asian Artists, Lent by
the New York Public Library, by Edward G. Freehafer.
Contemporary American Glass, Lent by the Corning Museum of Glass, by Thomas S. Buechner.