Station: [11] C – Cristallo-Glas: Venini Vase

  • Glasmuseum Wertheim


The lattice-grid vase in front of you is a 20th-century product. After the initial high point of Venetian glass art during the 18th-century it went into decline. The sturdy Bohemian chalk glass and brilliantly clear English lead glass had been invented and were in great demand. But two people, who didn’t only focus on the perfection of craftsmen’s ability, but also on artistic features, did manage to regenerate Venetian glass art: they were called Antonio Salviati and Paolo Venini.


Venini launched the new start for Venetian glass in the 1920s. In around 1950 he put Venice back in the centre of glass art for a decade. His success was mainly based on the collaboration between imaginative designers and qualified master glassblowers as well as on the rediscovery of the original quality of the glass: the lightness and clarity combined with simple, but elegant and harmonious shapes. Venini made small product ranges for his exclusive clientele instead of trying to mass-produce. On the basis of old techniques he tried and tested new possibilities and arrived at some astounding results. This was how he designed his complicated, yet famous „a zanfirico“, glass receptacles. These were made of thread glass rods and named after Antonio Sanquirico, a 19th century Venetian art dealer. Our lattice-grid vase from 1955 is one of them.