Mille Fiori Vases
Mille Fiori Vases

Murano glass artists are veritable ‘maestros’ renowned world-wide. The art glass can be bought today online or directly from the artisans on the island. The skill and history of the craft means the maestros can command some eye-watering prices From the early 1900s  the avant-garde and art noveau styles were gaining strength in Europe and a fissure between the classical Murano craftsmen and those who were receptive to change – the leader of this movement Vitorrio Toso Borella

In the 1920s, art nouveau slowly was replaced by more modern styles with simpler, cleaner, and more functional designs. Art deco took the center stage and with it came less decorated objects with softer lines and more focus on glassware as part of interior design, not a piece of art in and of itself. A new company, Vetri Soffiati Muranesi Capellin Venini, founded in 1921 under Vittorio Zecchin as its head designer became the champion of this style.

Post World War II was arguably once of the most creative periods over the last century in both the U.SA and Europe.   The glass masters of Murano returned to their art and created pieces deeply rooted in interior design trends of that time with the focus on minimalism, functionality, and simplicity. They took inspiration from Scandinavian glass masters – the designers across Europe inspired each other and techniques were shared. In the same way, West German Ceramics exploding with colour and texture influenced the Italian ceramicists. It is for this reason that 20th century design is so admired and desired currently. The modernist period was in full swing.

To support these trends Murano artists and artisans returned to techniques of the past such as filigree, murrino, and lattimo. From that point onwards,  Murano saw continued exploration of styles and techniques striving to find a happy medium between the technical mastery and the outline, color, and decoration.

The resulting continuous innovation led to a rise in popularity and to multiple prizes at various international art exhibitions. Thanks to such prominent artists as Archimede Seguso, Ludovico and Laura De Santillana, Tobia Scarpa, Ercole Barovier, Fulvio Bianconi, Toni Zuccheri, Romano Chrivi, Giampaolo Martinuzzi, and Alfredo Barbini, Murano again became known as the glassblowing capital of the world. Murano now created the art trends as opposed to following them in the years past.

Millefiori (which means “a thousand flowers” in Italian) has remained virtually unchanged since when it was first rediscovered by Venetian masters in the sixteenth century. The Roman “murrina” or millefiori glassware, is still used by Murano masters and the pieces coming from Masters such as Venini, and Fratelli Toso.

An insight into the mastery of the murano glass artisans.  Worth a look, you will admire the work on another level – these techniques come from the 15th century and collecting of the modernist and art deco periods have made the market vibrant.