100 artists, designers, and architects from more than 25 countries bring glass to life in this immersive exhibition featuring objects, lighting, videos, and multi-media installations. The selected artworks demonstrate the diversity of their makers and their skills, ranging from timely political commentary and investigations of the materiality of glass to explorations at the intersection of high-technology, tradition and the hand. The show includes emerging artists to established professionals representing nearly every glass working technique.
This first installation in the museum’s new curvilinear galleries gave the curators an initial glimpse at the possibilities for the display of artworks. Given the overall scale of the show and the requirements for security and visitor flow, the team confronted overall planning early and continually so that each of the pieces would be displayed in its best light. The biggest challenge was incorporating various glassworks into a cohesive show and taking into account the amount of foot traffic and crowds that would be around fragile works of art.
Ranging from minute jewelry to a large neon billboard, from media-driven technology to traditional glass vessels, the composition of white horizontal and vertical planes creates varied sub-environments that provide an elegant framework for the pieces. The orthogonal structure uses translucent and transparent glass barriers, white planes with a consistent 1.5-inch black framing and simple vitrines to achieve its powerful yet highly nuanced ambiance.
The gallery itself is bright white and curvilinear with skylights that let in a tremendous amount of light, so the design team needed to create a system that would compliment the space while also taking into considerations that some works needed special light requirements. Translucent and transparent Gorilla Glass of varying heights allowed visitors to see the works while maintaining a clearance around objects as necessary. The black framing allows for a strealined work that accents the space without distraction. The overall result is a clean, minimalist look that showcases art with little interference.
In addition to planning out the layout of the show, designing the structures, and graphic design for signage and labels, our work also included a separate archival show in the library’s Rakow gallery that talked to the changing nature of the Annual show’s review process in the key years of 1959, 1979 and 2019.
“The restraint and detail blow me away. Every detail is so thoughtful and consistent. Each artwork is allowed to hold space in its own right.”
“Copacetic with the architecture of the museum, this project beautifully connects a very diverse collection of objects in a sophisticated and simple way.”
“The material being exhibited truly popped. So well done.”
Monica Coghlan (design director), Shuo Yang (designer), Cassandra Gerardo (graphic designer)