The entwined histories of glass and wine extend back thousands of years, from lavish feasts of ancient Rome, to the polite society of Britain in the 1700s, to formal dinner parties of postwar America, to an essential experience within our contemporary food culture. The strength, impermeability, and versatility of glass has played an important role in every step of wine’s journey, from the production, distribution, sale, and ultimately the enjoyment of this intoxicating beverage.
The exhibition "Fire and Vine" includes a rare 2,000-year-old fragment of cameo glass depicting a grape harvest, a still-sealed bottle of wine found in a shipwreck off the coast of England, and an exceptional 400-year-old document describing an “almost unbreakable glass jar” that could prevent wine from spoiling.
Watch as master flameworkers Eric Goldschmidt and Caitlin Hyde, along with Curator of Ancient Glass Katherine Larson, explore the theme of Bacchus, the Roman god of wine and agriculture. Alongside Larson's curatorial perspective, Goldschmidt and Hyde team up at the torch to sculpt a compositional glass portrait of Bacchus from borosilicate sheet glass and rods.
Watch as Hot Glass Demo Team gaffer George Kennard and Curator of Ancient Glass Katherine Larson, PhD, explore the topic of wine consumption in upper-class English society in the 1700s.
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