Ever since reading Roberta Smith’s article Clear, Opaque and Oh, So Delizioso, published on December 6th, 2013, in The New York Times (online Dec. 5th), I’ve been meaning to stop in to see the Venetian Glass by Carlo Scarpa: The Venini Company, 1932-1947 exhibition at The Metropolitan Museum of Art. I finally made it along yesterday and I’m so happy to say, it truly is an impressive show.
Normally you want to view glass under natural lighting to really appreciate all the minute details and textures, so it was impressive to see the Met do such a good job at illuminating these pieces. The quality of the work and craftsmanship of Paolo Venini—founder of Venini Glassworks—and his master glass blowers really shines through.
The glassblowing techniques—and even the names of the techniques—are incredibly interesting. From smooth to rough, the colors and shapes created through employment of these various glass working techniques show so clearly how in control Venini and his master glassblowers were, and how they were able to achieve exactly the finishes and forms Scarpa envisioned. And while the larger pieces were very impressive, it’s not always about scale for these pieces. Some of the smaller pieces, the ones you could imagine easily holding in your hand, are some of the most intense, with their rich colors seeming to emanate out to fill the space around them.
Seriously, these pieces were so stunningly presented that it’s a real shame I couldn’t take photos while I was inside, but here are some courtesy of the museum. Enjoy!
Venetian Glass by Carlo Scarpa: The Venini Company, 1932-1947 is on until March 2, 2014, at The Metropolitan Museum of Art.
* All works depicted were designed by Carlo Scarpa (1906-1978) for Venini glassworks unless otherwise noted. All images courtesy of The Metropolitan Museum of Art.
Ambra is a passionate, seasoned curator, who facilitates great design through innovative collaborations between designers, artists, brands, and institutions. Among many other things.
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