By: Joan Falconer Byrd; Hardcover
The son of a Corning Glass Works scientist, Harvey Littleton (born 1922) first studied physics and industrial design, before becoming a teaching ceramicist. In the late 1950s, he turned to glassblowing, which was then restricted to the factory floor: devising a small furnace, he introduced hot glass into the artist’s studio. In 2012, exhibitions at the Corning Museum of Glass, the Chazen Museum of Art, Madison, and elsewhere will mark the fiftieth anniversary of the two historic Toledo Museum glassblowing workshops that Littleton led in spring 1962. At those workshops Littleton put the ancient medium of glass into the hands of today’s artists.
Benefiting from close access to the artist and his personal archives, the engaging text is illuminated by many unpublished archival photographs and a detailed chronology. Littleton’s early ceramic and glass vessels and his richly colorful glass sculptures, among them the late “Lyrical Movement” series—twisting, twirling forms—illustrate this beautifully designed book. It also includes work by his close friend and European counterpart Erwin Eisch and his former student and much-celebrated glass artist Dale Chihuly. Littleton’s work is represented in museum collections worldwide, including: the Museum of Modern Art and the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York; Smithsonian American Art Museum, Washington, D.C.; Los Angeles County Museum of Art; and the Victoria and Albert Museum, London.