20th Century Glass

The 20th century witnessed the greatest transformation in the role of decorative glass since it was first formed 6,000 years ago. Historically, glassware had been the preserve of the wealthy but industrialisation, improving infrastructure and the enrichment of the working classes combined a point where it was given away free at petrol filling stations.

This talk examines the emergence of new but significant glassmaking nations and the stylistic development of what was known as ‘fancy glass’ over the course of the 20th century.

‘The greatest problem with 20th century glass is that so much of it was produced, and hardly any of it bears marks that identify its maker or designer,’ Andy explains. ‘At least a million different designs were produced by hundreds of factories, so it is not surprising that I regularly find pieces that I’ve never seen before’. With this in mind, this talk travels across England, mainland Europe, Scandinavia and the United States on a voyage of illumination.