PRAGUE, Czech Republic (AP) _ Stanislav Libensky, an artist who cut and cast Czech glass into sculptures that gained recognition worldwide, died Feb. 24. He was 80.

Libensky was born in the small town of Sezemice in eastern Bohemia and studied at the Prague College of Applied Arts.

His glass sculptures were exhibited around the world, including at world trade fairs in Brussels, Montreal and Osaka in the 1960s. His style inspired generations of artists in Europe, Japan and the United States.

``Glass allows us to form shapes as we penetrate its mass, determine its center and touch its secrets,'' Libensky said about his style.

He also left his mark on Prague's architecture with an imposing glass building near the National Theater.

In the United States, his works are in the collections of several museums, including the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York and the Corning Museum of Glass in Corning, N.Y.

Libensky's work was limited by the Communist regime after the 1968 Russian invasion of what was then Czechoslovakia.

A retrospective of Libensky's work is being exhibited at the National Gallery in Prague. The show will move to the new Museum of Glass in Tacoma, Wash. on July 4.