“The Secret Life of Glass”

Spencer Finch

On the Boards – Brooklyn artist Spencer Finch (James Cohan Gallery) was commissioned by The Corning Museum of Glass to create a large glass installation located on the west bridge of their north wing, near the entrance to the Contemporary Art + Design hall. Finch has created a 14’ x 26’ artwork for this commission and selected Bullseye Studio to fabricate the 16 fused glass panels it requires, as well as design and engineer the needed support framework.

Known for light and glass installations that visualize his experience of natural phenomena, Finch has developed an artwork for Corning based on his idea of “the secret life of glass.” Finch took digital temperature readings of the site’s existing float glass curtain wall, investigating the clear glass’ experience of heat at a specific moment in time. Finch discovered a wave pattern in the temperatures and transformed this data and its patterns to a work of art; assigning colors to the primary temperature ranges, eight in total. Finch was seeking colors not  experienced every day, and was inspired by Matisse’s Sennelier palette of colors.

The glass used to make the panels will, in part, be pulled from Bullseye Glass Co.’s special production line due to their size. There are many “striker” glasses in the composition (glasses which don’t yield their true color until fired in the kiln), as well as glasses that when fused together incite reactions. Bullseye Studio has worked closely with Finch to design with these conditions in mind.

Once installed, the artwork will be comprised of sixteen laminated panels set into a framework just inside the existing clear glass curtain wall. Bullseye Studio is fabricating the glass artwork, as well as designing and engineering the artwork’s support frame, conducting all required Safety Glazing certification testing (impact, thermal, weathering), and consulting on installation.

The grid of the artwork support frame will mimic that of the curtain wall mullions.

This project is scheduled to be completed and installed in 2020.

Corning Museum of Glass: Behind the Glass –  Spencer Finch