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Our Story

Grateful Glass is the vision of accomplished glass artist, Matthew Olian.

Atlas Caskets sign

Throughout my career as an artist, I have crafted many meaningful pieces for milestone occasions. About 5 years ago, a patron at an art show approached me about making a custom memorial pendant using her late husband's cremation ashes. Having never worked with cremated remains, I cautiously took on the commission hoping to meet expectations. When I hand delivered the finished piece several weeks later, both the customer and I shared tears of joy. Although I previously had made many meaningful pieces, never before had I experienced so much positive emotion from one of my creations. It was at this moment that I decided to use my talent in order to bring happiness to others. And so the Grateful Glass flame was lit…

While in the early development stage of the business, my own grandmother passed away. She had always been one of my biggest supporters and advocates of my artistic endeavors. Unfortunately, she did not get to see Grateful Glass launched but I am certain my grandmother would be proud that I have been able to bring joy to so many. All of the memorial pieces you see throughout the site are made with her ashes. Without her inspiration and encouragement, Grateful Glass would not be here today. Grateful Glass is dedicated to the loving memory of my grandmother.

Grateful Glass is located in one of Philadelphia’s oldest manufacturing neighborhoods, Port Richmond. Ironically, our business is headquartered in what previously housed the Atlas Casket Company. After that company closed its doors, the building was repurposed to house a variety of artist studios and workshops. Grateful Glass represents the latest generation of skilled Philadelphia-based craftsmen who use old world techniques to create beautiful contemporary objects. We are extremely grateful to play an active role in perpetuating that artistic tradition.