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Adventures in Italy

The Glass Art Society (GAS) Annual Conference has come and gone. GAS members from all around the globe gathered in Murano, Italy on May 16-19th to meet fellow artists, take tours around the beautiful island, and watch demonstrations by world-class glassblowers. It’s certainly an unforgettable experience that glass artists look forward to each year.
This year April, Becca and Chris were lucky enough to fly out to participate in the conference- here are some highlights from their trip!
The Venini Factory has been in business for over 90 years. They are distinguished by their experimental glass color, innovative shapes, and unique light fixtures. The first four images show master glassblowers creating “Where Are My Glasses?” by designer Ron Arad. The other images are of some of the spectacular lights they have on display. The Venini Factory has been very influential in creating the American Glass Movement and in particular some of the shapes we create here at epiphany. We’ll be doing another in depth blog post on this next week. 
SALIR (Studio Ars et Labor Industrie Reunite) is the oldest factory in Murano, founded in 1923. They are known for glass paintings and engravings as well as modern and accurate reproductions of antique mirrors. The above images below give a glimpse inside the factory, showing beautiful and intricate glass goblets and artisans hard at work using traditional techniques.
Relive our vibrant memories with us, and discover the remarkable craftsmanship that has been passed down through generations of Venetian glass artisans. From dynamic sculptures to dazzling glassworks, come explore the bright colors, intricate designs, and incredible skill that make up the art of Murano glass.

These glass sculptures were all created by Livio Seguso. He not only uses crystal clear glass but experiments with materials such as steel, rock, marble, granite and wood. His pieces focus on geometry and the transparency of the the material.

A trip to Murano wouldn’t be complete without two things- the first being a trip to the studio of the Maestro, Lino Tagliapietra. Here are just some of his breathtaking glass pieces. The gold vessels are made from gold aventurine and sparkle because they have copper floating in the glass. The goblets are made using the same technique April uses in the studio to make our Tornado Decanters.

The second thing a trip to Murano (or anywhere in Italy!) wouldn’t be complete without- amazing Italian food! These lovely images are from the B Restaurant is owned by the incredible Andriano Berango, who helped to organize the GAS Conference this year.

Andriano Berango also founded the Berengo Studio and Fondazione Berengo. April is standing next to a Glasstree created by Koen Vanmechelen at Fondazione Berengo. Koen Vanmechelen in one of April’s favorite artists and had some work at Wasserman Projects in Detroit a few years ago. The second image is Ai Weiwei’s “Blossom Chandelier” also at Fondazione Berengo.

Lastly, just for fun, here’s what UPS looks like on the island of Murano. Not a job we envy. As you can see, there was a lot going on during the GAS Conference! 
Murano UPS Boat