Off-Hand Glass Blowing



Off-Hand Glass Blowing


M. Louise Pershing
Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania 1904-1986 Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania


ca 1936


oil on canvas


26 x 32 in.


In 1894, the United States Glass Company built the “Glass House” factory on the Monongahela River near natural gas deposits. The town of Glassport grew up around the factory. The Glass House, specializing in off-hand blown pressed glass tableware and molded glass products, became one of the largest handcraft glass manufacturers in the country. In 1963, the factory was damaged by a tornado and the furnaces were shut down, causing the batch of liquid glass to cool and harden into a 250-ton solid piece.

Pershing was a prolific painter and sculptor based in Pittsburgh. She often drew upon industry for the subject of her art. Her 1972, Cor-Ten steel sculpture The Flow was inspired by a visit to the U.S. Steel Homestead Works. "I find the ugliness of industrial Pittsburgh is its beauty," she said. The Flow still stands at Sixth Avenue and Bigelow Square in Pittsburgh.




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