The success of our exhibition “Venice: Harmonies of glass and fabrics” during the first edition – or as the insiders like to call it, edition “zero” – of “The Venice Glass Week” has confirmed we are on the right track: if on the one hand, contemporary art is ensuring a new and prosperous life to Murano glass, allowing Italian and foreign artists to experiment unusual shapes and most innovative techniques, on the other hand, there is a world of enthusiasts still desiring to learn about the past history of this amazing craftsmanship.
In the whole festival scenario, we have been one of the very few participants to organize an event – an exhibition in our case – featuring glass items dating back to 19th and to the start of 20th century, all displayed with fine Venetian textiles.
The fascination in the eyes of our visitors and guests prompted us to keep on searching for wonders from the past, and to look further into the depths of history.
It goes without saying that our research in not easy, not at all; nevertheless, it gets more captivating, day by day!
It’s our great pleasure to disclose in this first post of 2018 one of our last acquisitions, a real treasure from 17th century: a pair of small ampoules in colorless, transparent blown glass, in “penne” pattern.
All specifications are included in a data sheet we prepared; it’s available for download right here –> [data sheet]
Our picture might deceive the perception of the viewer for what concerns the actual size; both ampoules are very small, light and delicate. So delicate that for the time being we won’t clean them, we will rather let them as we found them.
In this way glass appears opaque, not so bright and shiny, it is true, but the hazard of deteriorating glass surface while trying to polish it, it’s definitely not worth it.
Keen observers may have noticed that inside the ampoules wax residues are to be seen. Wax traces? How come?
Well, it is very likely that our pair of small glass vessels first had a liturgical use. It is not hard to imagine them decorating an altar table, between candles, one containing wine, the other some water for the Eucharist.
Blown glass is one of the most fragile existing materials. Furthermore, if its transparencies have been reflecting lights and colors of four hundred years of history, its safety cannot but be in jeopardy.
The handle of one of the ampoules has indeed met an ill fate: at a certain point of its existence, it must have suffered a shock and it is now missing its upper part.
Similar ampoules are now preserved in the Glass Museum of Murano, Venice and at Museo Poldi Pezzoli, in Milan.
We are so thrilled that our store too has now the chance to house such long-lived and charming glass.
We look forward to having you here and to showing them to you!