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Clark Art Presents 'Fragile Beauty'
11:45AM / Friday, June 28, 2024
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WILLIAMSTOWN, Mass. — Drawn from the vast collection of the Corning Museum of Glass in Corning, NY, "Fragile Beauty: Treasures from the Corning Museum of Glass" demonstrates how makers from across time and around the globe have taken inspiration from the natural world to create works of art. 
The objects in the exhibition range in date from antiquity to the present and show a remarkable breadth of color, technique, form, design, and function. The exhibition is on view in the Clark Center's Michael Conforti Pavilion from July 4 through October 27, 2024.
"We often speak of the importance of appreciating art in nature," said Olivier Meslay, Hardymon Director of the Clark. "The influence and inspiration of nature is at the forefront of this exhibition, presenting exquisite glass objects that represent the finest craftsmanship in the world. We cannot wait to see these magnificent works of art displayed in the Michael Conforti Pavilion where they are sure to shimmer and sparkle. We are deeply indebted to the Corning Museum of Glass for generously loaning these beautiful glass pieces to us for this exhibition."
Highlights of the selection include glass from the Venetian island of Murano; enameled glass from early modern Europe and India; Art Nouveau glass by artists including Louis Comfort Tiffany (American, 1848–1933), René Lalique (French, 1860–1945), and Steuben Glass Works (Corning, New York, 1903–present); and contemporary works. Some of these objects were made for practical use, such as drinking glasses, vases, and pitchers. Others are purely decorative, from a life-size lemon to a giant flower.
"I am in awe of the technical skill and boundless creativity of the glass artists who made the objects on view in this exhibition – some recently, some many centuries ago," said Kathleen Morris, Sylvia and Leonard Marx Director of Collections and Exhibitions and curator of decorative arts. "It has been a true pleasure to mine the riches of the Corning Museum of Glass in order to bring this selection together, celebrating the beauty and variety of an ancient and universal art form."
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