First Advisor

Carl Abbott

Date of Publication

Spring 6-3-2013

Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.) in Urban Studies


Urban Studies




Studio glass -- Washington (State) -- History, Art movements -- Washington (State) -- History -- 21st century, Arts -- Economic aspects -- Washington State -- Puget Sound Region, Glass art -- Washington (State) -- Seattle -- History -- 20th century



Physical Description

1 online resource (vii, 312 pages)


The studio glass movement first arose in the United States in the early 1950s, and was characterized by practitioners who wanted to divorce glass from its industrial associations and promote it as a fine arts medium. This movement began in a few cities in the eastern part of the country, and in Los Angeles, but gradually emerged as an art form strongly associated with the city of Seattle and the Puget Sound region. This research studies the emergence and growth of the studio glass movement in the Puget Sound region from 1970 to 2003. It examines how glass artists and Seattle's urban elites interacted and worked separately to build the support structures and "art world" that provided learning and mentoring opportunities, workspaces, artistic validation, audience development, critical and financial support, which helped make glass a signature Puget Sound art form, and the role that artist social networks, social capital, cultural capital and cultural policy played in sustaining this community. In particular, the research seeks to explore the factors that nourish a new art form and artist community in second-tier cities that do not have the substantial cultural and economic support structures found in the "arts super cities" such as Los Angeles, New York City, and San Francisco. This study contributes to the growing literature on artist communities, and the roles played by social capital, cultural capital, urban growth coalitions and policy at different stages of community development. Results can assist policymakers in formulating policies that incorporate the arts as a form of community development.


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