Translating Glass: ASL Interpreters at Pittsburgh Glass Center

At Pittsburgh Glass Center, we offer American Sign Language interpretation to help facilitate our live demonstrations. However, translating the names of the materials and processes used at the demonstrations can be an unexpected, yet fun challenge for interpreters. 

Explore More of Pittsburgh Glass Center with Our New Mobile Guide

Pittsburgh Glass Center is excited to announce the launch of our new digital guide on Bloomberg Connects, the free arts and cultural app created by Bloomberg Philanthropies. The Bloomberg Connects app, available for download from Google Play or the App Store, makes Pittsburgh Glass Center accessible for either onsite or offsite visits through photo, audio, and video features offering insights into the science, art, and history of glass in Pittsburgh. Download the free app now!

There's More to Hot Wheels Than a Souped Up Truck

Did you see our mobile glass studio Hot Wheels on KDKA last month? Even though we say that Hot Wheels can popup anywhere, anytime, it takes a lot of behind the scenes work to bring Hot Wheels out into the community. 

PGC Artist John Sharvin Competes on Netflix Hit Glassblowing Series Blown Away

The Netflix Original hit glassblowing competition series "Blown Away" is back for a third season, and we are fired up to announce that amongst this season's competitors is Pittsburgh Glass Center's own John Sharvin! Join us for a FREE "Blown Away" watch party and demonstration on Friday, July 22 from 5-9pm.

SEEN: Pittsburgh Glass Center Open House with Elliot Walker

Via Pittsburgh Post-Gazette: Elliot Walker, the winner of the second season of “Blown Away” on Netflix, demonstrated his glassmaking craftsmanship as he worked on a piece surrounded by 100 guests during a private open house Saturday at the Pittsburgh Glass Center. READ THE ARTICLE

Pittsburgh Glass Center plans major expansion for its Garfield headquarters

Via NEXTpittsburgh: "Demand for the center’s classes and equipment is so great that they have run out of room. So a major expansion is in the works, to be grafted onto the existing brick building. The new space will largely be floor-to-ceiling glass — of course — looping over the top of the parking lot, but preserving most of the parking behind the building."

PGC's Top 10 for 2021

Here's a look at our most notable accomplishments from 2021. 

Nikki Lau Explores Social Justice and Identity at Pittsburgh Glass Center Residency

Artist Nikki Lau talks about her art exploring identity politics and social justice, and her residency creating new work for our upcoming exhibition, Full Spectrum.

PGC and Pittsburgh Are Proud and Powerful with Google Arts & Culture

Today Google announced its partnership with 15 world-class Pittsburgh institutions to bring the city’s culture—past and present—online on its Google Arts & Culture platform and app at   

For the first time, everyone everywhere can engage with these organizations—including Pittsburgh Glass Center—across the city in one digital location and discover its unique culture. Through the Pittsburgh: Proud and Powerful page, Google Arts & Culture hopes Pittsburghers can rediscover just how much their city has to offer, and that visitors will be encouraged to discover the city for themselves.  

What’s All the Buzz in the Hot Shop

Did you know that beeswax is an important part of a glassblower's tool kit? Glassblowers use beeswax to lubricate their tools. Beeswax makes the glass slide along more smoothly without leaving marks on the glass. It’s expensive to order and ship beeswax from across the country. That's just one reason we’re lucky to have Bedillion Honey Farm as a partner.

Call for Artists—Full Spectrum, an Exhibition of BIPOC Makers, Artists, Designers, and Craftspeople

Pittsburgh Glass Center would like to invite BIPOC craftspeople to apply for Full Spectrum, an exhibition brought to you by Crafting the Future, ORIGINS, and The Color Network. This exhibition will celebrate the diverse voices in the field and the myriad of approaches to a fully realized practice and career. We invite you to apply whether you identify as a maker, artist, designer, craftsperson, or anywhere in between. DEADLINE TO APPLY: August 1, 2021

Glass Goes First Class at Pittsburgh International Airport

Find this exciting display highlighting Pittsburgh Glass Center, our Penn/Fairmount line of glassware, and 5 local glass artists on the 2nd floor of the landside terminal of Pittsburgh International Airport. Learn more about the arts and culture programs at PIT

PGC Fires Up for Autism Acceptance Month

This First Friday, PGC partnered with Evolve Coaching to host a Hot Jam recognizing Autism Acceptance Month featuring Pittsburgh-based illustration artist Chas Chasler and his character Guber the Ferret. PGC glass artists collaborated with Chas and other staff from Evolve Coaching to help Guber the Ferret come to life. This event provided an opportunity to spotlight neurodivergent artists and Evolve’s support of individuals with disabilities in education, employment, and the arts.

You Can Enter To Win This Stunning Plasma Glass Art!

Enter our raffle for this vibrant plasma art by Harriet Schwarzrock, in conjunction with the LIT: Light In Transmission exhibition. Purchase tickets through July 18 to enter. Raffle proceeds will benefit PGC's artist residency program. Buy your tickets now!

LIT's Women in Neon to Gather for Artist Panel with She Bends

Join us on Friday, March 26 at 6pm ET on Facebook Live for a virtual artist panel and neon bending demonstration with Sarah Blood, Eve Hoyt, Danielle James, Leticia Maldonado, Harriet Schwarzrock, and Megan Stelljes, the women artists of LIT: Light In Transmission and members of She Bends, the first and only collective of womxn bending their own neon.

Take a Neon Tour of the Pittsburgh Area

We worked with Pittsburgh artist and photographer Charles Biddle to map out a self-guided neon sightseeing tour of Pittsburgh that will give you an opportunity to explore the city and all of its glowing neon light. Enter our Neon Tour Contest for a chance to win a Private Pod Workshop for 2!

Pittsburgh Glass Center and Pittsburgh Botanic Garden Call for Artists

Pittsburgh Glass Center (PGC) and Pittsburgh Botanic Garden (PBG) announce a call for glass artists from the Pittsburgh region to apply for "Second Nature," an exhibition at Pittsburgh Botanic Garden’s new welcome center in the fall of 2021.

Pittsburgh Glass Center’s Heather McElwee guest judges on hit Netflix show ‘Blown Away’ (link)


Via NEXTpittsburgh: "Awareness of the center just got a big boost after McElwee was a judge on the Netflix reality glassmaking competition show, 'Blown Away.' Her episode, the fourth in the show’s second season, debuted on Jan. 22." READ THE ARTICLE

PGC Unveils the Prettiest Little Free Library on the Block

The Pittsburgh Glass Center team was excited to unveil our new Little Free Library in honor of Martin Luther King, Jr. Day.

PGC's Top 10 for 2020

This year has been challenging for all of us due to the pandemic. At Pittsburgh Glass Center, nearly all classes and workshops have been cancelled and the entire staff has been working reduced hours since mid-March. Because of supporters like you, PGC still has a lot to celebrate. Take a look at these highlights from an unprecedented year!

There's Still Time to Give Glass This Season!

We’re sad that we couldn’t bring all of the talented glass artists in Pittsburgh together this year for our annual holiday glass sale. The good news is that all of these artists are still being creative and making beautiful handmade jewelry, tableware, sculptures, ornaments, and more. Their work is available online and in stores around town. 

Here’s a roundup of where you can find handmade glass gifts right now!

A Couple of Jagoffs Walked Into PGC...

We had a great day last Saturday yakkin' with the Jagoffs about everything from science to art and gift giving. Even though they didn't think they had creativity flowing in their back and gold blood, we proved them wrong! 

Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra and Arts Partners Collaborate in New Video to Encourage Public to #MaskUp

The Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra has joined with Pittsburgh Glass Center and 12 other leading arts and culture organizations in Pittsburgh to release a new video that encourages the public to #MaskUp, as a response to government and public health recommendations to wear masks in order to reduce the spread of the COVID-19 virus.

Get Creative with Our New Glass to Go Kits

NEW! Try this at-home creative activity using glass to create your own fused glass suncatcher! Once you design it, we’ll fire it, so that all pieces become one.

We're Open and We Can't Wait to See You!

It's been a long time. We've missed you! As of July 21, we are once again open to the public in a limited capacity and with new hours of operation. Visitors can:

  • Explore Silica Valley in the Hodge Gallery (CLOSING JULY 25)
  • Pick up items made previously in classes
  • Shop for handmade glass gifts

Black Lives Matter

Pittsburgh Glass Center stands with the Black community in demanding justice and change. We will continue to amplify the voices and ideas that will lead us to a more equitable society.

May 11–17 Designated Arts and Culture #All412gether Week in Allegheny County (link)

(via Allegheny County) County Executive Rich Fitzgerald today proclaimed May 11–17 as “Arts & Culture #All412gether Week” in Allegheny County. The proclamation and designation recognize the vibrant arts and culture community and their commitment to our region’s civic life, health and well-being by working together to innovate and provide creative engagement and educational resources for our community, at home.

Mosaics: Glass Art, Piece by Piece

Mosaics as an art form have been around for thousands of years. Making a mosaic is a fun and easy at home activity. All you need are tiny parts like colorful paper, bits of ceramics, or glass; glue; and something to decorate. Anyone of any age or ability can make a mosaic and almost anything can be mosaiced. Recycle something from around the home like a yogurt cup, flower pot, empty wine bottle, pickle jar, piece of wood, or even an old bowling ball.

PGC's Silica Valley Glass Art Exhibition Goes Virtual

Access to our facility is limited due to the COVID-19 health crisis, so we're bringing our latest exhibition, Silica Valley, to you at home! Look inside for virtual tours, interviews, and educational activities that will help you get the best of this exhibition exploring the impact of current technologies on one of art's oldest mediums. 

Experimentation, Risk, and Failure on the Road to Glass Art Innovation

During their residency at PGC in preparation for the Silica Valley exhibition, artists Jenn Figg and Matthew McCormack encountered successes such as figuring out the context of their work, but they also experienced failures with some of their technical experiments. Challenges pop up frequently when artists create new work. On one hand, they frustrated Jenn and Matthew; however, on the other hand, they inspired them and gave them opportunities to solve problems that no one ever had attempted.

“It’s a huge experiment for us. We’re taking extreme risks with the material,” Jenn said. Matthew said, “Failure is important, and it’s an intrinsic part of artistic growth. If we don’t allow ourselves to fail, we won’t experience success.”