Kirk J. Nelson will present an illustrated lecture titled New Bedford Glass and Its Context on Thursday, April 26 at 7:30 p.m. – part of the 2012 Old Dartmouth Lyceum lecture series on fine and decorative arts. A reception at 6:30 p.m. in the Jacobs Family Gallery precedes the lecture.
Mr. Nelson is executive director of the New Bedford Museum of Glass, located at 61 Wamsutta Street. He earned his MA degree and Certificate of Museum Studies from the Winterthur Program in Early American Culture at the Winterthur Museum and the University of Delaware. An expert on the development of the American glass press during the 1820s and 1830s, Mr. Nelson is an Honorary Fellow of the Corning Museum of Glass, former Curator of Glass at the Sandwich Glass Museum and former Curator of Art & Decorative Arts at the Bennington Museum. He has lectured and published extensively on a wide variety of glass-related subjects. His practical glass working experience includes Pairpoint Crystal, Inc. of Sagamore, Massachusetts, and the operation of a glass studio in East Sandwich.
In 1993, Mr. Nelson was one of five founding trustees to establish the Glass Art Center, Inc., which was affiliated with Bradford College in Bradford, Massachusetts. After the closing of the college the Center relocated to New Bedford and reincorporated in 2006 as the New Bedford Museum of Glass.
The museum collection consists of 7,000 objects documenting more than 3,000 years of glassmaking history. It covers many regions and periods, from ancient to contemporary, with special emphasis on the city of New Bedford, celebrated in the late 19th century as the “Art Glass Headquarters of the Country.” Rose Amber glass, Crown Milano, Royal Flemish, Burmese and Lava glass are just a few of the exotic lines developed in New Bedford.
The museum’s library holds more than 8,000 volumes in ten languages on glass related topics, including the Shirley Collection of the Mount Washington Glass Company – containing the firm’s original glass patents, trade catalogs, correspondence, photographs, and international awards.
Admission to the lecture and reception: $15 members; $20 non-members. For tickets, call (508) 997-0046 Ext. 100.