Adjacent to The Studio, the Frederick Carder Gallery features an extensive collection of glass designed by Frederick Carder (1863–1963), a gifted English designer and craftsman. Steuben’s evolution as a luxury brand began in 1903, when the company was founded by Thomas G. Hawkes, owner of the most preeminent glass cutting firm in Corning, New York. For the firm’s first 30 years, Frederick Carder directed the artistic and technical innovations, introducing hundreds of colors—including the lustrous Aurenes, bubbling Cintra, and rare Rouge Flambé—and supplying blanks for Corning-area cutting firms.
Steuben, which was acquired by Corning Glass Works in 1918, underwent a dramatic reorganization in 1933. Production shifted entirely to a highly refractive optical glass designed by a wide range of international artists and made in the Corning factory. For much of the 20th century, Steuben glass was the gift of choice for weddings, retirements, and state visits. This glass was displayed at the company’s New York City flagship store, and Steuben pioneered innovative marketing strategies that still define luxury branding today.
The Carder Gallery highlights Frederick Carder’s distinguished career in glassmaking from 1880 to the 1950s. The Gallery displays his early pieces made at the English firm of Stevens & Williams, many of the objects he designed, as well as individual pieces he created in his retirement from Steuben.
Some of the pieces in the Carder Gallery belong to The Corning Museum of Glass, but the majority are on loan to the Museum from the nearby Rockwell Museum. Robert Rockwell, a Corning businessman and the founder of the Rockwell Museum, was a friend of Carder’s and a dedicated collector of all types of Carder’s Steuben glass. The gallery includes thousands of objects, and it shows every type of Steuben glass that Carder created.