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Object Timeline

1956

  • Work on this object began.

2017

  • We acquired this object.

  • You found it!

  • We photographed this object.

Murrine Vase, 1956

This is a Vase. It was designed by Anzolo Fuga and produced by Arte Vetraria Muranese (A.VE.M.). It is dated 1956 and we acquired it in 2017. Its medium is blown glass. It is a part of the Product Design and Decorative Arts department.

Anzolo Fuga comes from a family with long ties to Murano and its glass industry; the Fuga family made glass on the island beginning in the Middle Ages. In the early twentieth century glasshouses in Murano revived their production with the engagement of modern artists and sculptors who introduced innovations in color and form while still honoring long held traditions of craftsmanship. Anzolo Fuga played an important role in this revival when he started work as a designer for the Arte Vetraria Muranese, known as A.VE.M, in 1955. Fuga’s training at the Istituto d’Arte di Venezia between 1934 and 1939 under the direction of the artist Guido Balsamo Stella allowed him to mature as an artist, working in the graphic arts, watercolor techniques, and in the art of stained glass, which continued as his primary medium of exploration for the rest of his career. Fuga’s simultaneous work as a stained glass artist while at A.VE.M informed his choice and use of color and his understanding of the interaction of color and light, both integral parts of his glass design.
Fuga was immensely productive during his time at A.VE.M and would experiment with three or four new models in a single day. As a result the pieces he selected to keep exist as variations on a theme rather than in uniform series. Two vases in this group date to 1956 and show white areas of lattimo glass interrupted by stripes, rods, and dots of multicolored glass that are inserted or laid overtop. “Lattimo,” or milk glass, refers to the technique of creating a white glass that dates back to the medieval era. Two other vases are a part of the Murrine Incatenate collection that takes its name from the description of a piece on exhibit in Verona in 1960. The two vases in this group are variations made in two colors using an incalmo technique, invented in Murano in the 16th century that experienced a revival in the second half of the twentieth century.
Fuga’s designs were so highly prized, that the A.VE.M would lock away Fuga’s glass wares after they were made to discourage copying and fakes. From 1984 onward, Fuga continued to work for A.VE.M but was aided by his son Flavio, who later took over his father’s role upon the death of Anzolo in 1998.

This object was donated by Neil Weisman and Donna Weisman. It is credited Gift of Neil and Donna Weisman.

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Its dimensions are

H x diam.: 49.5 × 15.5 cm (19 1/2 × 6 1/8 in.)

Cite this object as

Murrine Vase, 1956; Designed by Anzolo Fuga (Italian, 1914–1998); blown glass; H x diam.: 49.5 × 15.5 cm (19 1/2 × 6 1/8 in.); Gift of Neil and Donna Weisman; 2017-33-2

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<ref name=CH>{{cite web |url=https://collection.cooperhewitt.org/objects/1108954483/ |title=Murrine Vase, 1956 |author=Cooper Hewitt, Smithsonian Design Museum |accessdate=17 November 2017 |publisher=Smithsonian Institution}}</ref>

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