The UrbanGlass studio, offices, Art Center gallery and store will be closed in honor of Presidents' Day on Monday, February 17.

Thursday August 29, 2019 | by Andrew Page

New York Times art critic Martha Schwendener will deliver keynote lecture at the 2019 UrbanGlass symposium that runs from October 24th through the 26th

The theme for the fourth biennial academic symposium at UrbanGlass is "Issues in Glass Pedagogy: Criticism, Critique, and Critical Thinking," and the keynote speaker will be a prominent New York Times art critic.  Martha Schwendener, a visiting associate professor at New York University, writes for several top art publications, but most often for the Times, where she focuses on non-mainstream artists. Just this year she's reviewed Nancy Spero's feminist art exhibition at PS 1, the big MoMA show on art and technology, and the Karrabing Film Collective.

The 2019 Robert M. Minkoff Foundation Academic Symposium at UrbanGlass will examine criticism on many levels, and from multiple perspectives. From best practices, such as techniques to how to most effectively structure and manage a crit, to exploration of how critical discourse is shaping the field, the October 2019 event seeks to spark dialogue and exchange as art education is being challenged to become more aware of implicit bias and more attuned to issues of gender, race, and identity. The event will span three days, kicking off with a Thursday-evening gallery tour and reception on October 24th, continuing with a day of lectures at a state-of-the-art auditorium on October 25th (where the keynote address will be given at 9 AM), and concluding with a full-day of presentations and workshops at the studios of UrbanGlass on October 26th. Tickets for the three-day event are $175 for professionals, and $125 for students.

The 2017 academic symposium drew over 100 glass educators and students, hailing from as far away as China, Finland, Australia, Japan, and Israel. Like previous iterations, the 2019 event will include a guided gallery tour to prominent contemporary art exhibitions featuring glass, lecture presentations on topics relating to the theme "Criticism, Critique, and Critical Thinking," as well as moderated panel discussions, breakout sessions and workshops. The upcoming symposium will offer multiple networking opportunities during receptions as well as catered breakfast and lunches on Friday and Saturday.

L to R: Katherine Gray (UC San Bernadino), Justin Ginsberg (UTexas Arlington); artist Deborah Czeresko; Koen Vanderstukken (Sheridan)

Among the highlights of the upcoming symposium: a panel discussion of the Netflix series "Blown Away" featuring show principals Katherine Gray, Koen Vanderstukken, and Deborah Cereszko, as well as show critic Justin Ginsberg.

L to R: Brian Carpenter (U Toledo), Jane Cook (Penn State), Angus Powers (Alfred)

There will also be a panel discussion of interdepartmental explorations of glass moderated by former Corning chief scientist Jane Cook, who will compare and contrast academic critique formats with scientific peer-review process. Angus Powers, head of glass at Alfred University, and Brian Clark of the University of Toledo will discuss their respective projects to collaborate with other departments. 

Other presenters include Jens Pfeifer (Gerrit Rietveld Academie, Amsterdam), Jeffrey Sarmiento (U Sunderland, U.K.), Matt Perez, Judith Schaecter (U Arts, Philadelphia), Anna Riley, Mary Drach McInnes (Alfred), Gabriel Peña (Concordia, Quebec), and others.

Visit the 2019 symposium page for more information on the presenters, as well as to reserve your tickets.

Note: Symposium organizers have arranged a special rate at a nearby hotel through a link that will be emailed to you upon request after registration is completed.

Email for questions, or for additional information about the event or lodgings.

Glass: The UrbanGlass Quarterly, a glossy art magazine published four times a year by UrbanGlass has provided a critical context to the most important artwork being done in the medium of glass for 35 years.