DetailsFrom 9th to 17th September 2023, Venice, Murano and Mestre will welcome back The Venice Glass Week. The international festival was founded in 2017 to celebrate, support and promote the art of glassmaking. Now in its seventh edition, this year’s festival will be titled: TheArtofFire; a reference to the fires that burn daily in the furnaces of Murano, and the fundamental element involved in the production of artistic glass.
This year the festival received more applications from aspiring participants than ever before, with over 250 proposals submitted by candidates from 34 countries. All of the applications were subject to evaluation and selection by the Curatorial Committee, which is chaired by Venetian glass historian Rosa Barovier Mentasti.
The wealth of proposals - submitted by a broad spectrum of applicants including foundations, art galleries, museums, cultural bodies, universities, glassworks, furnaces, companies and artists from Italy and abroad - is a sure sign of the dynamism and vitality of Venice’s artistic and cultural tradition, as well as a highly encouraging indication of the increasingly powerful appeal of The Venice Glass Week as a platform for showcasing and celebrating the art of glass.
The Floating Furnace
Among the most important highlights of the seventh edition of the festival will be the hotly anticipated return of The Floating Furnace: a programme of live glassmaking demonstrations promoted and organised by Consorzio Promovetro Murano. The Floating Furnace will feature a barge decked out with an active glass furnace and will host a series of live demonstrations by a number of different glass masters and students. As such, it will transport the art of glassblowing out of Murano’s furnaces and into the heart of Venice, raising public awareness of the fragility of the island’s glass industry whilst also highlighting its unique, spectacular qualities as an art form which must be preserved at all costs for future generations.
The Venice Glass Week Tours by Nexa
The festival will offer an official programme of guided visits to a selection of furnaces and ateliers: The Venice Glass Week Tours by Nexa. Each tour is designed to enable small groups of visitors to experience the magical world of glassmaking first-hand. In addition, for the first time, the festival programme will also feature The Venice Glass Week HUB Tours by Nexa: daily guided visits, commencing at set times, of The Venice Glass Week HUB and The Venice Glass Week HUB Under 35 at Palazzo Loredan in Campo Santo Stefano.
The Projects by the Organising Committee
The Organising Committee of The Venice Glass Week are presenting many initiatives this year.
Consorzio Promovetro Murano will present Murano: Upcycling Glass, an exhibition curated by the architect Matteo Silverio of the ReHub studio, which will be hosted by the Murano Glass Museum from 7th September 2023 until 6th January 2024. Murano: Upcycling Glass aims to highlight the flexibility and skill of sixteen master glassmakers from companies that are officially conceded to using the Vetro Artistico® Murano brand trademark.
The Venice Glass Week will also see a new programme of events dedicated to the production of glass beads, recently inscribed by UNESCO on the Representative List of the Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity. In particular, the Museum of Palazzo Mocenigo will host a conference titled Le Collezioni di perle dei musei stranieri, with speakers including representatives of important international institutions and museums.
Bohemian Glass: The Great Masters
The exhibition Bohemian Glass: The Great Masters, curated by Caterina Tognon and Sylva Petrovà is open to the public at LE STANZE DEL VETRO until 26th November. The exhibition, created in collaboration with the Museum of Decorative Arts in Prague, presents the work of six great artists of contemporary glass sculpture who were born in the first decades of the twentieth century in Bohemia – the historical name for the largest of the lands that make up the present-day Czech Republic: Václav Cigler, Vladimír Kopecký, Stanislav Libenský and Jaroslava Brychtová, René Roubíček and Miluše Roubíčková.
Stories of Factories. Stories of Families
The Murano Glass Museum will host the exhibition Stories of Factories. Stories of Families. One hundred years of NasonMoretti. The Story of a Murano Glass Family, on view until 6th January 2024. Curated by Chiara Squarcina and Cristina Beltrami, the show aims to celebrate one of Murano’s most flourishing and original companies, NasonMoretti, which celebrates its centenary in 2023.
During #TheArtofFire, official prizes will be awarded: the Premio Fondazione di Venezia for The Venice Glass Week will be presented to the best project in the festival, and the Autonoma Residency Prize will be awarded to the best installation in the HUB Under35. All projects in The Venice Glass Week 2023 will be considered candidates for the Premio Fondazione di Venezia for The Venice Glass Week. The winner will receive a cash prize of € 1,000.00,
The Autonoma Residency Prize will be awarded to the best installation within The Venice Glass Week HUB Under35. The prize will enable the winner to undertake a two-month residency at Pilchuck Glass School in Seattle (USA) in 2024.