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What Is So Special About Murano Glass?

What is so special about Murano Glass by GlassOfVenice.com
Murano Glass master at work in a glass factory in Venice, Italy. Photo credit: GlassOfVenice.com

What is so special about Murano Glass and why is it so famous? Murano Glass is an art form that exists on Murano island in Venice, Italy for over a thousand years. Murano Glass is handmade by highly skilled glass masters. and each glassware creation is unique and valuable. Owning a Murano Glass piece signifies not only having class and artistic taste but also being a part of a long Venetian tradition and knowing how to enjoy the finer things in life.

Here are the 3 main things that make Murano Glass so special:

1. Murano Glass has a long history.

Practiced in Venice at least from the 8th century, Murano Glass became one of the Venetian republic’s key industries by the 1200s and all glass-making factories were moved from Venice to Murano in 1291. Since then, Murano Glass art became famous and popular far beyond the shores of the Venetian republic. It was favored by monarchs, nobility, and successful merchants for its radiance, translucency, and feather-light weight.

Murano Island Old Map Murano Glass History
Old map of Murano island. Photo credit: GlassOfVenice.com

2. Murano Glass is an art.

Despite the modest roots from which it grew initially, when it was simply a craft that required skilled hands and involved a repeatable process, today Murano Glass is in fact a recognized art form. Many Murano master glassmakers made the name of themselves in the art world by being bold and daring and realizing the emerging art trends of their time in glass form, or by collaborating with other artists across the art spectrum. World-famous names such as Salviati, Toso, Batovier, Zecchin, Capellin, Seguso, Scarpa, Bianconi, Martinuzzi, Barbini. Zanetti, Rosin, and many others make up the hall of fame of Murano Glass Art.

Murano Glass Art In Museum In Venice
Murano Glass on display in a museum in Venice, Italy. Photo credit: GlassOfVenice.com

3. Authentic Murano Glass is valuable.

Unlike many other decorative pieces that are mass-produced today in the factories of China, every Murano Glass piece is an original creation made by hand according to the ancient tradition. It has a piece of the heart and soul of the artist, it embodies the unique beauty and radiance of Venice, and beyond the monetary value that may be relatively low or may run into hundreds and thousands of dollars, it has sentimental value that cannot be measured.

If you are thinking about selling your Murano Glass piece down the road, there is a large market of Vintage Murano Glass both on specialty Murano Glass sites like GlassOfVenice and on specialty art and vintage marketplaces such as 1stdibs.com and rubylane.com, as well as on various auction houses’ websites.

Murano Glass Is Valuable
Murano Glass in Correr Museum in Venice, Corning Museum in Corning NY, and Metropolitan Museum in New York City. Photo credit: GlassOfVenice.com

So why is Murano Glass so famous and special? It is made in small factories and workshops on Murano island entirely by hand. The glassmaking process has changed little over the centuries and the master glassmaker uses only very basic tools to create Venetian glassware. Today Murano Glass is an art form, with its own famous names like Salviati, Venini, Seguso, Barovier, Bianconi, Moretti, Barbini, Scarpa, Toso and many more. It is also a vanishing craft, which needs to be protected and sustained since it’s an important part of the history of growth and development of humanity, and a significant component of the world heritage.

People who have been to Venice, Italy instantly fall in love with Murano Glass after browsing small boutiques and large galleries that fill up the island of Murano and Venice itself. If you buy your own Murano Glass artwork, whether in a store in Venice or online from GlassOfVenice, or at an auction, please know that it is not merely a piece of jewelry or a vase, but a way to get closer to the beating heart of Venice that is as strong today as a thousand years ago.

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