Tomaso Buzzi at Venini

Curated by Marino Barovier14th September 2014 — 11th January 2015

The exhibition retraces the brief but fruitful collaboration between Tomaso Buzzi and the Venini glassware company, through a selection of 200 works celebrating the Italian taste of the Thirties, archival drawings and an unprecedented collection of original projects.

Between 1932 and 1933 the Milanese architect Tomaso Buzzi began a fruitful collaboration with the Venini glassware company, which would continue, albeit episodically, in later years. The architect’s creative contribution was evident both in the glass forms and in their innovative manufacturing technique. When Buzzi arrived at the Venini company in Murano, in 1932, he brought with him a remarkable cultural baggage and a thorough knowledge of ancient art, particularly the Etruscan period, where he looked for inspiration with the aim of creating new and original artefacts.

This was achieved through the experimentation with a new glass material, “vetro incamiciato”, with several layers of colour and gold leaf. This technique radically changed the appearance of the glass produced at Venini, contributing to the drive for the innovation of the Murano-based glassware company, and re-asserting its vocation for producing elegant and refined glass. The exhibition “Tomaso Buzzi at Venini”, curated by Marino Barovier, retraces this brief but fruitful collaboration, documented through the selected works (approximately 200), original drawings preserved in the Venini archive, and a previously never displayed collection of drawings preserved at the Scarzuola in Montegabbione (near Terni).

On the occasion of the exhibition, Skira will publish the first complete “catalogue raisonné” of Tomaso Buzzi’s work in glass, edited by Marino Barovier with Carla Sonego. Furthermore, for this third exhibition dedicated to the Venini glassware company, film director Gian Luigi Calderone has made a documentary film entitled “Tomaso Buzzi. Memories of my Guardian Angel”, which tells the story of the Milanese architect through the unpublished notes for his autobiography, narrated from the point of view of his “guardian angel”.

 

View the catalogue

  • Tomaso Buzzi. Vase with two mouths in cased alba glass consisting of different coloured layers with applied gold leaf, 1932-33
  • Tomaso Buzzi. Large laguna glass vases consisting of different coloured layers with applied gold leaf, 1932-33
  • Tomaso Buzzi. ‘Coppa delle mani’ (Bowl of the Hands) in laguna glass consisting of different coloured layers with applied gold leaf, 1932-33
  • Tomaso Buzzi. Alga glass and alba glass vases consisting of different coloured layers with applied gold leaf and inverted truncated cone-shaped neck. Bowl in laguna glass consisting of different coloured layers with applied gold leaf, 1932-33
  • Tomaso Buzzi, Incamiciati, installation view. Photo: Enrico Fiorese. Courtesy: LE STANZE DEL VETRO
  • Tomaso Buzzi, Incamiciati, installation view. Photo: Enrico Fiorese. Courtesy: LE STANZE DEL VETRO
  • Tomaso Buzzi. Bowl in laguna glass consisting of different coloured layers with applied gold leaf, 1932-33
  • Tomaso Buzzi. Ovoid vase in turquoise cased glass with small flared foot and mouth in black glass. Fruit bowl in turquoise cased glass with truncated cone-shaped foot in black glass, 1932
  • Tomaso Buzzi. ‘Boccia dei cavallini marini’ (Vase of the Sea-Horses) in alga glass with applied gold leaf. Vase in alba glass consisting of different coloured layers with applied gold leaf, 1932-33