A first-century Roman cinerary urn. A Coca-Cola bottle from 1910. A contemporary sculpture of bandaged bones.
Contrasts: A Glass Primer presents a wide variety of remarkable glass objects in an accessible and lively format. These objects are grouped, as in a child's book of opposites, to illustrate highlights in glass history (factory/studio, for example), characteristics of the medium (fluid/rigid), and ways of describing art in general (abstract/figurative). Above all, Contrasts is an invitation to creative seeing.
Contrasts: A Glass Primer is published in conjunction with an exhibition of the same name on display at the Museum of Glass, Tacoma, through November 2009.
Vicki Halper is former curator of modern art at the Seattle Art Museum and recent James Renwick Senior Fellow of the Smithsonian American Art Museum. She specializes in modern art of the Pacific Northwest and crafts of the United States.