Museum of Glass, Tacoma, Washington

WA, Tacoma Museum of Glass, credit Chuck Lysen

If you haven’t been to the Museum of Glass in Tacoma, Washington, do yourself a favor and schedule a trip. The Museum of Glass is dedicated to glass and glassmaking and houses the West Coast’s largest and most active museum glass studio. You not only will see many styles of glass art on display, but you’ll also be able to watch the creation process in action in the museum’s Hot Shop. 

Glass art has made a journey from function to art over about a 70-year period. Two current exhibits examine both function and form to illustrate this journey. 

First, “Counterparts: Glass + Art Elements” displays groupings of glass and non-glass artworks, examining the evolution and acceptance of glass as an artistic medium. “Counterparts” inspires further conversation about art’s evolution through the juxtaposition and association of artworks inclusive of all mediums.

Second, “René Lalique: Art Deco Gems from the Steven and Roslyn Shulman Collection” displays nearly 200 French Art Deco glass art objects that are considered by many to be the apex of early 20th-century glass. Lalique’s work elevates glass beyond its function as a utilitarian and industrial material and places it undeniably in the realm of decorative art. His approach and philosophies elevated public perception of glass as an art medium and set the stage for the contemporary Studio Glass movement. 

“Counterparts: Glass + Art Elements” is running through March 2022.

“René Lalique: Art Deco Gems from the Steven and Roslyn Shulman Collection” runs through June 2022.