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Lino Tagliapietra, Master of a Glass Renaissance

Samantha Janazzo (February 20, 2017)
From the young age of 11 years old, Lino Tagliapietra began his glassblowing apprenticeship on the island of Murano in the picturesque city of Venice. Today, he is one of the most renowned glassblowers of our time, known for his independence, innovation, and creativity. From March 11 to June 18, 2017 his pieces will be exhibited at the Morris Museum in Morristown, New Jersey.

The highly anticipated Lino Tagliapietra exhibition called, “Lino Tagliapietra: Maestro of a Glass Renaissance,” is arriving at the Morris Museum in Morristown, New Jersey.  Renowned for his master craftsmanship of the generational Venetian artistry, the Murano native glassblowing expert will be celebrated Saturday, March 11 with an elegant opening reception in the museum’s historic galleries.  The display will showcase electrifying glass vessels, signature two-dimensional panels, and graceful aerial pieces that radiate bright colors and fluidity so unique to his personal style, he has gained international recognition. The pieces will be open to the public until June 18, 2017.

The Morris Museum

The Morris Museum is the second largest museum in New Jersey, and the only one that also houses an active theatre. It is a non-profit centered in creating a friendly atmosphere that exudes hands on education while embracing a rich history.  The building’s original brick mansion was property to the Frelinghuysen Estate; which has been transformed into the museum the past decades.

The History of the Master

The Maestro (master glassblower), Lino Tagliapietra, is a fitting candidate for popular the Northern New Jersey museum. Tagliapietra’s work has been exhibited around the world in museums and galleries such as the Metropolitan Museum of New York, The Smithsonian American Art Museum’s Renwick Gallery in Washington DC, the Victoria and Albert Museum of London, and the De Young Museum of San Francisco, to name a few. The exhibition at the Morris Museum is curated by Alexandra Willis and co-curated by Jim Schantz.

A true story of hard work, dedication, and success, Tagliapeitra began glassblowing at the young age of 11 in Venice on the island Murano, under the apprenticeship of the influential glass bowing artist, Archimede Seguso. Creating glass art is a process that very few master. It begins with an inflated sphere of molten glass with a consistency similar to molasses. The orb is then manipulated through small rolling or swinging movements, puffs of air passed through a pipe, and steal tools that can add other stylistic elements that must be perfectly times before the substance hardens. Just the smallest drop of water or piece of dust can create imperfections. Though most of Tagliapietra’s life has been dedicated to both refining his technique and creating an international stamp on studio glassblowing, his work is eminent of the centuries of previous perfection of the craft that was passed onto him. 

Bringing the Exhibition to the Morris Museum

The Morris Museum will exhibit the pieces from Tagliapietra’s past fifteen years, encompassing the classic blown glass vessels and two-dimensional fused glass panels.  "Tagliapietra’s interests in art, style, design, and culture are all evident in his forms. These figurative pieces require careful planning, thorough preparation, and thoughtful design" states Alexandra Willis, curator of the Morris Museum. During his most recent years, the Maestro began a completely independent glassblowing career, a monumental change for those in factory glassblowing as a career. The Morris Museum exhibition sheds light on Tagliapietra as an independent artist and his experimental tasks that continue to push the limits of the strenuous art. For this reason, even the highest skilled glass craftsmen look to prominent artist as their instructor and inspiration.

The exhibition illuminates a tradition that has been traced back thousands of years on the small island of Murano. What makes this display so special is the way Tagliapietra has introduced the ancient art as contemporary through stylistic changes, pioneering a new conon of modern glassblowing. The Main Gallery of the Morris Museum, where his work will be exhibited, is an expansive space that allows natural light to flood in through the vast floor to ceiling windows. The sun with catch the small details of Lino’s intricate glass pieces and cast sparkling designs on yellow, purple, reds, and blue on the sprawling crisp white walls.

You're Invited!

Pay tribute to the incredible skill displayed at the Morris Museum, as stated by the Maestro himself: “Glass is a wonderful material. Why? Because the glass is alive. Even when it is cool, it is still moving. It is connected with fire, it is connected with water, it is so natural. Glass is my life.” Each piece is born from a heated furnace up to 4500 degrees and laboriously molded with patience and gentle movements giving each one a uniquely specific personality, mobility, and radiance of color.

For those interested in witnessing this piece of Italian culture, tickets to the opening reception here available here

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