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Thursday, September 06, 2007


7th Annual "Great Glass Pumpkin Patch" October 5-6;
10th Annual Page Hazlegrove Lecture in Glass Art October 11

Cambridge, MA... It's a bumper crop you won't want to bump too hard. Over 1,000 hand-blown glass pumpkins, squashes and gourds in all sizes, shapes, colors and designs will transform a grassy court at MIT into a colorful “Great Glass Pumpkin Patch” on Friday and Saturday, October 5 and 6, in front of MIT’s Kresge Auditorium, 48 Massachusetts Avenue.

Visitors of all ages are invited to stroll through the "pumpkin patch" on MIT’s Kresge Oval and choose their favorite autumnal orb Prices range from $20-$200, depending on the piece’s size and complexity. Many of the works feature not only vivid colors, but swirls, stripes, spots, curlicues and unusual stems.

The Great Glass Pumpkin Patch begins with a preview reception (no sales) on Friday, October 5 from 5 to 8 p.m. On Saturday, October 6, between 10 a.m. and 3 p.m., shoppers and browsers are invited to stroll through the "pumpkin patch" and purchase their favorite autumnal orb.

(Rain date is Sunday, October 7, from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.)

The glass pumpkins were created by students and instructors in MIT's Glass Lab, where members of the MIT community learn and practice the art of glassblowing. Proceeds from this event benefit the Lab, an art program connected with MIT's Department of Materials Science and Engineering. Pumpkin-making is overseen by glass artist Peter Houk, director of the the MIT Glass Lab in the Department of Materials Science and Engineering.

The Great Glass Pumpkin Patch came to MIT in 2001 after a residency in the Glass Lab by 14 members of the Bay Area Glass Institute (BAGI). The Bay Area Glass Institute (a non-profit corporation located in San Jose, CA), was founded in 1995 by San Jose State graduate Bobby Bowes and MIT alumnus Mike Binnard.
Every week or so, beginning, intermediate, and advanced students work together for a few hours in teams of six or seven to produce pumpkins for the sale. Production for the October event continues steadily throughout the year in order to achieve the goal of 1,000-1,200 pumpkins.

For more information--including an illustrated step-by-step description of "How To Make a Pumpkin," see:, or call (617) 253-5309.

Color images are available.


Dante Marioni, a second-generation glass artist whose massive sculptural vessels combine classic forms with contemporary aesthetics and colors will present the 10th Annual Page Hazlegrove Lecture in Glass Art on Thursday, Oct. 11. The talk is at 7 p.m. in Room 46-3002 (McGovern Center, 43 Vassar St.).

In 1993 Marioni was one of 72 artists whose work was selected for inclusion in The White House Collection of American Craft. His current work includes large vessel forms, some nearly three feet tall. With shapes inspired by classic Greek urns, these pieces are freely blown, without the use of molds.

For more information, call (617) 253-5309 or see

Lynn Heinemann, MIT Office of the Arts
(617) 253-5351, e-mail

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