The first unforgettable exhibitions of LE STANZE DEL VETRO


While waiting for the next exhibition, let’s retrace together the first stages of LE STANZE DEL VETRO from 2012 to 2015.

We have just bid 2023 farewell and we are already looking forward to 14 April 2024, when we will have the opportunity to discover the next exhibition of LE STANZE DEL VETRO: ‘1912-1930 Murano Glass and the Venice Biennale’. However, we will not spend these three months leading up to the inauguration sitting on our hands, because there are so many outstanding exhibitions devoted to the beauty of 20th-century and contemporary Murano and international glass art that have found a home on the island of San Giorgio Maggiore since 2012.

Our trip down memory lane begins with the exhibitions devoted to the history of the renowned Venini glassworks, starting with ‘Carlo Scarpa. Venini 1932-1947’, the very first exhibition at LE STANZE DEL VETRO, curated by Marino Barovier, which between 2012 and 2013 reconstructed Carlo Scarpa’s creative path during his years as artistic director of the well-known Murano glassworks (from 1932 to 1947).

This exhibition was followed by others, all curated by Marino Barovier, such as ‘Napoleone Martinuzzi. Venini 1925-1931’, ‘Tomaso Buzzi at Venini’ and ‘Fulvio Bianconi at Venini’, which presented the most significant works produced by Venini over the years through its collaboration with these sculptors, architects and designers.

The contemporary strand instead was launched in 2013 with the exhibition ‘Fragile?’, curated by Mario Codognato, focusing on the works of some of the most interesting artists of our time, who have used glass with the most varied and contrasting intents and outcomes (Marcel Duchamp, Joseph Beuys, Gilbert & George, Ai Weiwei, Rachel Whiteread and Carsten Nicolai, among many others). Then in 2014 it was the turn of ‘I Santillana’, with the magnificent works of the siblings Laura de Santillana and Alessandro Diaz de Santillana.

The following year, LE STANZE DEL VETRO turned its attention to Northern Europe with the exhibition ‘Glass from Finland in the Bischofberger Collection’, curated by Kaisa Koivisto and Pekka Korvenmaa, which presented masterpieces by the leading Finnish designers of the 20th century.

Fragile?, installation view, Cyril de Commarque (left), Mona Hatoum (right). Photo: Matteo De Fina

Napoleone Martinuzzi. Venini 1925-1931, installation view. Photo: Ettore Bellini

Alessandro Diaz de Santillana. Untitled (MUDAC), 2011. 122 x 202 x 12 cm. E.R., 2006 (left). 35 x 18 x 380,5 cm (both). W-oval, 2004 (right). 98,5 x 221 x 10 cm © the artist. Photo: Fabio Zonta

Laura de Santillana. Installation view © the artist. Photo: Fabio Zonta

Tomaso Buzzi at Venini, installation view. Photo: Enrico Fiorese

Glass from Finland in the Bischofberger Collection, installation view. Photo: Enrico Fiorese