Art of Glass

VENINI Art of Glass is the cultural part of the brand, whit the astonishing archive of drawings, images, prototypes and works. Its archive contains more than 45,000 drawings by worldwide renowned artists, such as Carlo Scarpa, Gio Ponti, Napoleone Martinuzzi, Tapio Wirkkala, Fulvio Bianconi and Tadao Ando; 10,000 photographs of architectonic installations, past exhibitions and people who have worked with Venini; and 5,000 works including prototypes which have never been launched on the market. Prototypes and drawings are often lent to the most important international museums to set up Murano glass exhibitions. Venini has become thus a benchmark for the glass art.


Venini aims to be inspiring for all those artists, architects and designers who will be working with the company. It tells a story about investigation, creation, passion and handicraft.


Mimmo Rotella was born in 1918 in Catanzaro; he studied at the Art Academy in Naples and then he moved to Rome. There he conducted various researches and experiments: photographs, photo-montages, decollages, assemblages of heterogeneous objects, phonetic poetry, primitive music. His works were imposed immediately to the attention of critics and collectors of avant-garde. In 1961 he participated to the invitation of the French critic Pierre Reastany to join the group Nuoveaux Reealistes, and in 1963 he produced his first works of mechanical art. In 1990 he painted on decollages portraits of the ‘900 masters of art; these decollages made him famous around the world. For Venini, Mimmo Rotella designed the series “Replicanti”, figures who prefer to live light houses rather than museums, a private relationship instead of a pure religious contemplation and spaced; and the “Sasso” lamp, a work in blown glass and hand-made, characterized by a particular play of reflections. The hot glass mass is modeled to obtain a form which evokes that of a stone.


Sandro Chia – Born in Florence the April 20 1946, prominent member of the Transavanguardia movement, he has a unique style suspended between the strength of the signs and the vehemence of colors. His works normally describe not so much the reality, but an imaginary world. His two works “Mappamondi” for Venini express clearly the artist identity: produced from a conceptual design where the glass, almost a globe, seems to whirl filled with mysterious light which penetrates from the bottom. Polychromatic radiation shine around the magical glow and radiate also the basic building blocks of cast bronze. The glass processing techniques involving glass layers of different colors and degrading to the top of a mass of transparent glass.




Alessandro Mendini was born in Milan in 1931. He was the editor in chief at Casabella, Modo, Domus and Ollo, specially interested in the radical and neo-modern design. He works with Studio Alchimia and designs, both by himself and in collaboration with others, furniture, objects, decorative motifs, clothing, stage sets and small-scale architecture. He is also a painter and journalist, and receives many awards in Italy and abroad. His works can be found in the permanent collections of important museums, such as the Metropolitan Museum of New York and the Centre Pompidou in Paris. He began to collaborate with Venini in 1987; he designs lamps and glass objects.


Ettore Sottas – He graduated at the Polytechnic of Turin in 1939. He is engaged in design, painting, designing furniture, objects, ceramics and participating, between 1947 and 1960 in the periodic Triennial in Milan. Since 1958 he has been design consultant at Olivetti. He has received recognition on numerous occasions. In 1976, the International Design Zentrum in Berlin organized a retrospective exhibition dedicated to him, which was subsequently put on display at the Venice Biennial and the Musée des Arts Décoratifs in Paris. He began his collaboration for Venini in 1988.


Emmanuel Babled –  was born in France in 1967. He studied Industrial Design at the European Institute of Design in Milan, graduating in 1989. In 1992 he founded his own independent design studio. In Paris he created several interior decoration designs for private residences. He collaborated with some important French companies designing furniture and household objects. In 1992 he opened a studio a studio in Milan, contributing his designs to several Italian companies. Emmanuel Babled’s design approach is based on the idea that a good project is born through direct contact and physical presence in the territory of its production. And these elements that determine the result. He began his collaboration with Venini in 1993.


Vittorio Zecchin frequented the Fine Arts Academy of Venice. In 1914 he presented at the Biennial, together with the painter Teodoro Wolf Ferrari, a series of glasses realized at the glassware Barovier. During the war 1915 – 1918 he set up a laboratory of tapestries in an ex-convent in Murano. He exhibited his works – art glasses, tapestries, embroidery and paintings at the Biennial of Venice, Milan, Rome, Monza, Turin, Paris. He taught at the Abbate Zanetti school in Murano (glass) and also at the Vendramin Corner professional school ( tapestries and embroidery ).
From 1921 to 1925 has been the artistic director of the society Vetri Soffiati Muranesi Cappellin Venini & C.


Matteo Thun – He graduated in Architecture at the Florence University in 1975; he then moved to Milan where he started to collaborate with Ettore Sottsass. From 1983 he started to teach design at the University in Wien, until 2000. In 1984 he founded he Matteo Thun Studio and he started working for the Swatch as the artistic director (1990-1993). Winner of three awards “Compassi d’Oro”, he is a stylish designer, with a wide experience in the luxury sector: in fact there are many five stars hotels that bear his signature. Thun focuses on taste and balance, the ability to create a dialogue between their different components and, finally, to realize pleasant and sometimes unexpected relationships between architecture and the surroundings. This means a different approach depending on the contexturban or natural – in which it is to place the intervention. He began his collaboration with Venini in 2011.


Gae Aulenti graduated 1954 from the faculty of architecture of Milan Polytechnic. From 1955 to 1965 she was on the editorial staff of Casabella. During the sixties she worked in the universities on the courses of Giuseppe Samonà on architectural composition in Venice and then in Milan with Ernesto N. Rogers. Her projects, published in Italy and abroad, as well as architecture, include interior design, industrial design, the staging of exhibitions and theatrical sets. Among her most celebrated architectural works, the projects for the renovation of the Musée d’Orsay in Paris and Palazzo Grassi in Venice. She began collaborating for Venini in 1993.



Tadao Ando, born in September 13 in Minato-ku, Osaka and raised in Asahi-ku, is a Japanese architect whose approach to architecture was categorized by Francesco dal Co as critical regionalism. Ando has led a storied life, working as a truck driver and a boxer prior to settling on the profession of architecture, despite never having taken formal training in the field. He visited buildings designed by renowned architects like Le Corbusier, Ludwig Mies Van der Rohe, Frank Lloyd Wright and Louis Kahn before returning to Osaka in 1968 and established his own design studio, Tadao Ando Architects and Associates. He works primarily in exposed cast-in-place concrete and is renowned for an exemplary craftsmanship which invokes a Japanese sense of materiality, junction and spatial narrative through the pared aesthetics of international modernism. He began his collaboration with Venini in 2011.


Fulvio Bianconi – Settling in Milan, he collaborated as graphic designer and illustrator with the publishers Mondadori, Bombiani, Garzanti and frescoed the Galtrucco shops and Trade Fair pavilions. In 1946 he travelled many times to Murano to learn more about the art of glassmaking. Here he met Paolo Venini who, sensing the creative spirit of the young Bianconi, invited him to collaborate with his glassworks. From his with the Figure della Commedia dell’Arte, the Tiepolos the Fazzoletto, the Sirene, the Pezzati and many others emerged. New workmanship techniques of the glassmaking art and revision of the age-old ones were the subject of the creative research of Fulvio Bianconi. Molding movement and color into his glass pieces, Fulvio Bianconi established a totally up-to-date link with the history of Murano.


The SVeronese vase is part of the collection “Venetian Deformations”. This series of objects talks about perfection, that characterized everything made during the ages of the Serenissima Republic, and deformations, occurred after centuries of history and, maybe, decay. As time passes by, everything gets old and deforms. Starting from the painting by Paolo Veronese, in which the vase that took his name was represented with perfect lines. Today it is affected by the passage of time; it got deformed, coming to new aesthetic qualities. The “badly made” may be a feature of our times and its deformation furnishes proof of our reality and of a new idea of beauty.” Gaetano Pesce.


As everybody knows, the Bauta was not a Carnival mask, but where used by the noble men in order to cover their faces while hanging out at some notorious streets. This mask is one of the most characteristic object of the Venetian past and, like some others, it has been deformed, due to time passing by.” Gaetano Pesce

The collection “Deformazioni Veneziane” consists of a series of Venetian archetypes, once perfect, that today, as time passed by, appear distorted. I could say this is due to their “age”. Their shape used to express the golden age of the Republic of Venice. Today, we live in a much more complicated reality, where incoherence and contradiction happen every day, and our objects are a proof of it; they carry within them a mark of flaw and deformation. From the past I chose to say this through: the Cappello del Doge, that symbolizes the extreme power during the decay if the Republic of Venice; the Bauta, which is not a Carnival Mask as it was worn by the noblemen in order to avoid to be recognized while hanging out at some notorious streets; the Bricola, which is still in use today to moor the boats; the Vera del Pozzo, a tridimensional signal, which used to be put in the Venetian squares in order to inform people about the presence of drinkable water; the Ferro, Remo and Forcola, three irreplaceable pieces of the Gondola, once a common means of transport, today only employed for tourists. Last the modular lamp which wants to celebrate the popular way to hang out clothes, in the squares, streets, courtyards, balconies. This collection wants to spread a message: contemporary design is an expression of the place where it is realized. An additional way to talk about a local reality, made up of identity, diversity, tales and comments. No more abstract beauties, talking about null, silent skins, but objects that maybe can help Design to step forward. Gaetano Pesce, New York october, 2012.


Getano Pesce – Born In La Spezia, Italy, In 1939 And Educated In Venice, Gaetano Pesce has become Prominent In Severl Fields – Architecture, Interior Design, Graphics, Film. He Realised Numerous Projects In Architecture, Including The Hubin Apartment In Paris (1986), The Organic Building In Osaka (1990), The Gallery Mourmans In Knokke- Le Zoute, Belgium (1994), The Schuman Residence In New York (1994), The Office For The Advertising Agency Twba/Chiat/Day (1994), Or Monumental Glass Design Elements For The Palais Des Beaux Arts Of Lille (1996). The Architect’s Reputation Has Also Been Built Upon Exuberant Experimentation In The Area Of industrial design and furnishings. Gaetano Pesce has launched the New York city companies Fish design and open Sky to develop and manufacture home design objects, lighting and jewellery for the consumer market. Gaetano Pesce’s work is represented in the permanent collections of leading museums internationally.



Gabriele Magro studies at the Faculty of Architecture in Venice, preferring composition and drawing courses. He studies the relationship between architecture and aesthetics and completes the university course with a thesis on University and Territory. Between 1996 and 1997 she completed a internship at Eric Moss’s studio in Culver City, LA, as a model modeling aid for the Sant’Antonio Bay in Ibiza. In 1998 he was finalist for the Archaeological project at Aquileia. Engaged in the design nourishes his personal vision from the observation of nature in its essence and variable shapes. Start working with Venini in 1998.

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Art 2017, Sculpture