From the outset, the Musée des Arts Décoratifs has taken a particular interest in glass, from the creations of Emile Gallé or Henry Cros - the first designers to see glass as medium for the plastic arts - through a remarkable group of Restoration crystals, the famous “opalines”, or an outstanding set of glassware from the 16th to the 18th century, permitting a comprehensive study of French production and comparison with Venetian and Bohemian crystal.
The glass collection is extensive. It includes pieces from Art Nouveau to the 1930s, with masterpieces by Gallé, Rousseau, Daum, Lalique, Marinot, etc. as well as an outstanding set of international contemporary pieces signed by the greatest creators of our day: designers, artists, craftsmen…
Over 4,000 objects from the Middle Ages to the present-day make up the richest collection in French museums.
The Glass Center was created in 1982 to promote this particularly rich heritage, collect a body of documentation that is unique in Europe, and provide a meeting place and research and study center for professionals and art lovers alike.
The Glass Center has a specialized documentary collection:
• 2,500 books dealing with glass from antiquity to the contemporary period in all countries
• 900 commercial catalogs, old and contemporary
• 300 monographs on contemporary French and international glass makers and press cuttings on over 1,800 contemporary designers
• 60 French and international specialized magazines