Pittsburgh: America’s Glass City

Pittsburgh:  America’s Glass City

For more than 200 years, Western Pennsylvania has been a center for the production, design and marketing of glass. It is also home to an internationally-known education center and studio, Pittsburgh Glass Center.

Anne Madarasz from the Heinz History Center and Heather McElwee of Pittsburgh Glass Center will talk about the history of glass in the region and how Pittsburgh Glass Center is upholding the tradition and contributing to Pittsburgh’s thriving cultural landscape.

This virtual experience compares and contrasts the historic hot glass industry with a major glass art studio. In addition, you can watch Pittsburgh artists at work and understand how the overall processes may differ, but the tools, skills and fascination remain the same.

When you register on Patreon through the button below, you gain access to all of our Virtual Storytelling On-Demand recordings for $10 per month.  Cancel at any time. 

The story was recorded on November 8, 2021.

Your Storytellers

Heather McElwee is the Randi & L. Van V. Dauler, Jr. Executive Director of Pittsburgh Glass Center where she has worked since 2001, overseeing educational programming, exhibitions, fundraising and strategic direction for the organization. She has curated numerous shows in PGC’s Hodge Gallery including Lifeforms, Pittsburgh Biennial and Turned On: Lighting Hooks Up with Sculpture. Her own artwork is an investigation of the relationship of vessel to architecture and has been shown in galleries across the country. For more information, visit the Pittsburgh Glass Center.

Anne Madarasz has been at the Heinz History Center since 1992 and currently holds the titles of Curatorial Division Director, Chief Historian, and Director of the Western PA Sports Museum. A graduate of Trinity College in Hartford, Connecticut, she completed the coursework for her Ph.D. at the University of Pennsylvania. She served as Project Director and Curator for Glass: Shattering Notions and authored the accompanying catalog. She was awarded a Richards Fellowship for research from the Corning Museum of Glass and lectures and writes frequently about Pittsburgh glass, regional industry, and the history of Pittsburgh sports.


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