Museology Master of Arts Program

April 6, 2021

“Beyond the Hot Shop: Glass in a Digital Age” An Exhibition

Project Thesis by Esterly Paquita

The principal component of this project, completed as part of the Emerging Curator Initiative (ECI), was the development, design, and production of an exhibition entitled Beyond the Hot Shop: Glass in a Digital Age for Museum of Glass (MOG) in Tacoma, Washington, which was on display from January 2020 to May 2020. The “big idea” of the exhibition was that emerging technologies are helping push the creative boundaries of glass art. The exhibition explored the use of technologies such as 3D printing, virtual reality, CNC routing, computer modeling, and thermal imaging in the creation of glass art through the themes of potential, experimentation, and accessibility. The exhibition surveyed nine artists who are using these technological tools both alongside and in place of traditional hot shop methods, and their work suggests that emerging technology is indeed pushing the boundaries of glass art. The use of tools was chosen as a framing device for the exhibition based in part on communication with the artists. In addition to the exhibition, the project also included two educational programs, a formative evaluation, and a summative evaluation.

Evaluation data revealed that visitors were interested in learning more about the use of digital tools and about the artists who use them, and this was correlated with QR code tracking on exhibit labels. Evaluation further revealed that visitors have concerns about the ‘loss of the handmade’, a question ripe for further study.


Esterly, P. (2020). Beyond the Hot Shop: Glass in a Digital Age An Exhibition. [Unpublished master’s project]. University of Washington, Seattle, Washington.


project, emerging curator initiative, exhibition, glass art