It’s interesting to contemplate the many obstacles to liberty - past, present, and future. Walking through the glass gallery of the National Liberty Museum (NLM), home to Maurice Gareau’s biblical glass scenes in stained glass, one remembers the colonists who came to America seeking religious freedom. Having escaped persecution in Europe, their challenge then became how to live in peace with others who did not share their beliefs. The NLM’s glass chess set by Gianni Toso includes flameworked pieces arranged in groups, as if conspiring to find answers to the complicated dilemmas that the search for liberty generates.
Located in the heart of historic Philadelphia, the National Liberty Museum is dedicated to preserving America’s heritage of freedom by encouraging people to find their own place in the story of liberty. Visitors to the Museum enjoy an inspiring and entertaining experience, as they interact with incredible stories of heroes and a collection of contemporary glass art including a 20-foot tall glass art sculpture entitled Flame of Liberty by Dale Chihuly.
The National Liberty Museum first opened its doors to the public in January 2000. An independent learning and exhibit center, the museum is supported by visitors, community leaders, and foundations. Core themes include leadership and good character, diversity and inclusion, peaceful conflict resolution, and civic engagement.
In the Spring of 2017, the NLM sponsored a temporary exhibit titled The Treachery of Images: A Glass Art Exhibition. This exhibit pushed the limits of artistic respectability by showcasing the work of pipe makers and embracing the challenges they face in their efforts to be accepted within the art world. Later in the podcast, you’ll hear from pipemaker Jeremy Grant Levine, also known as Germ.
The NLM’s current GlassAccess Temporary Exhibit, Transparency: An LGBT+Q Glass Art Exhibition began in June runs through August 6, 2017. To celebrate Pride 2017, the National Liberty Museum hosted the nation’s first museum exhibit of studio glass works produced exclusively by artists of the LGBTQ community. Later in the podcast you’ll hear from participating artists Tim Tate, Jenny Pohlman and Sabrina Knowles.
We begin our podcast tour of the National Liberty Museum's history, goals, and exhibitions with glass department manager, Meegan Coll.