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Blair Museum of Lithophanes

Laurel Gotshall Blair, founder of the Blair Museum of Lithophanes, was a native Toledoan. A lifelong lover of beauty, Laurel was visiting a fellow musical box collector in Berlin Heights, Ohio, when he saw for the first time in the windows, delicate porcelain pictures illuminated by the sun shining through the lithophanes. "And with that," he frequently said, "I fell in love." These porcelain castings seem only to be bumpy surfaces forming a vague picture. But, when ambient light is extinguished and the lithophane is back-lit, a beautiful, three-dimensional picture appears in incredible depth and detail.

Over time, Blair amassed such a large collection that he established a private museum in his home to display them. He also made an in depth study of their history, origin and use and became the world expert. Upon his death in 1993, Mr. Blair bequeathed the Collection, numbering over 2300 lithophanes, to the people of the city of Toledo. Located at the Toledo Botanical Garden, people from around the world are able to view, enjoy and study lithophanes for generations to come.


Toledo Botanical Garden
5403 Elmer Dr.
Toledo, OH, 43615
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