«Someone said that “one in a thousand can make it”. Well, yes, I made it: I became a glass designer».
Mario Pippolini is absolutely happy: working in Murano, putting his talent at the master glassmakers’disposal was his dream since he was a boy. He had always been bewitched by those twisted figures, those transparencies, those colors, that he watched in the shops windows when, as a child, he walked by, hand in hand with his parents. His peers stopped to look at the toys, he stared, fascinated, harlequins, animals, objects and anything else that came out of the imagination and skill of murano glassmakers. Now he has turned that passion into a profession.
Nothing can depict the color as much as the glass
The matter, the color: ” Nothing can depict the color as much as the glass,” he states. And his mind goes to the works of the Renaissance, to those colored enamels that made Murano glass famous all over the world, and to the ingenuity of those who invented new solutions, perhaps to obstruct the competition, such as the “lattimo” or “lattesino”, or the opaque white glass, obtained with tin oxide, used in the early days to imitate the precious porcelain from China
Everything was born there, and those traditions still have been continuing nowadays: in the materials and techniques, a master glassmaker of the Renaissance could recognize himself even today. Innovation, on the other hand, is in the design and it is actually mario pippolini’s field of action.
Originality and Innovation
Its originality lies in marrying innovation with tradition, with the philological research of tradition. «I want to combine the maximum of the contemporary with the maximum of the traditional», the designer observes, «therefore, I apply my intuitions, my forms, to old-fashioned processes, performed without molds, a kind of workmanship that was a bit lost, sacrificed on the altar of comfort». Working with these ancient techniques, forgetting the molds, requires some extra effort, but the result is undoubtedly a quality sometimes forgotten.
The charm of Murano is just that: continuity and innovation. Since 1290, namely , when the government of the Serenissima transferred all the furnaces to the island of the lagoon to avoid the danger of fires in Venice, glass has been working in the same way. But every generation has added, discovered and innovated something. Today it is Mario Pippolini’s turn, it’s up to him to graft talent and intuition on such an ancient tradition: an exciting challenge for a young designer.