DANMARK - EBELTOFT - Venice. 3 Visions in Glass


Laura de Santillana - Bambu Vases

Venice, and in particular the island of Murano, is a place with strong traditions for glass making. For many centuries, the Italian maestros have kept secret and protected their knowledge about the many highly refined and demanding techniques, which characterize the world famous Venetian glass making.

Thus the three artists represented in the exhibition Venice. 3 Visions in Glass are extraordinary not only due to their distinctive work in glass but also for breaking from tradition. They work together with studios on Murano and are acknowledged worldwide for renewing form, aesthetics and techniques.

As Janet Koplos writes in the book, published in connection with the exhibition “each of the three [artists] brings to the work a non-standard approach: Laura de Santillana because she is a woman in what has been a man’s field. Yoichi Ohira because he is Japanese in Italy, and Cristiano Bianchin because he combines two contradictory materials. The artists thus escape convention in a way that few Murano craftsmen would choose to do – or even conceive of doing.”

Cristiano Bianchin was born in1963 in Venice. He graduated from Accademia di Belle Arti, Venice, in 1987, and made his first work in glass in 1992. Cristiano Bianchin combines glass with other materials and primitive figurines, inspired by African and native American culture. In his latest series of glass urns, he combines hand-blown glass with crocheted hemp and figurines into objects, which are both elegant and conceptual. Bianchin also makes large wall pieces, made from crocheted hemp, installations and works made of wood and paper.

Japanese born Yoichi Ohira (b.1946) has lived and worked in Venice for more than 35 years. He studied at Kuwasawa Design School in Tokyo, 1969, and Accademia di Belle Arti in Venice. His vessels combine Japanese aesthetics with traditional Italian techniques and colours into poetic pieces outside time and space. In his groundbreaking series Cristallo Sommerso he creates organic “torsoes” in clear glass.

Laura de Santillana (b.1955) was born in Venice and is the grandchild of the renowned founder of the Venini Glassworks, Paolo Venini. She graduated from the School of Visual Arts, New York, USA, 1975-77. Her blown objects in the series called Tokyo-ga are simple two or three coloured meditations on colour, form and surface, which are often compared with Mark Rothko’s abstracts paintings. Santillana’s works however, have a vibrancy which is not obtainable with canvas and paint. Lately she has developed a series of organic, metallic Meteors, which relate to fallen objects from the sky.

Venice. 3 Visions in Glass presents 91 works from the last 10 years made by three of the most significant contemporary artists working with glass today, made in collaboration with skilled craftsmen from Murano studios.

Cristiano Bianchin, Yoichi Ohira and Laura de Santillana are all represented in many international private and public collections and have received numerous prestigious awards for their groundbreaking works.

The exhibition has been arranged in collaboration with Barry Friedman Ltd., New York.

Glasmuseet Ebeltoft   15.10.2011 - 07.04.2012

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