The Antica Murrina. History and Curiosity
What you need to know to buy an original Murano glass piece and appreciate its features.
Where was Murrina born?
First of all, the murrina and the glass working in Venice are linked to the island of Murano (not Burano, beware! Yes I know ... two islands just a few minutes away by the boat and two similar names!).
First rule: first of all, be careful and don’t catch the wrong waterbus!
You must know that Murano had already been founded at the time of the Barbarian raids in the lagoon, but at the end of 1200 it was decreed as a unique and official place used for the glass making, be it for its strategic location or either because the kilns in Venice had caused too many fires and repeatedly threatened to destroy whole areas of the city.
Second rule: if you have to use fire, burn off just an island rather than burn all of Venice.
Exactly as you think! The Venetian Republic was much wiser than many current rulers: if a fire broke out the whole city would have been destroyed and so they said … “we transfer everything on the island of Murano, if things go bad, we only lose that”
Anatomy of a murrina. How it is made.
It is perhaps the most famous Murano glass work among the many performed by the Venetian skilled master glassmakers, so particular and captivating, it fills the eyes with its thick drawings! I realized, however, that not everyone understands the great work and the huge, unaltered tradition that the antica Murrina holds.
Third rule: the final product is, as usual, only the "tip of an iceberg" of work and mastery.
To begin with, each Murrina Jewellery piece, if original, is unique. It is the result of a painstaking mosaic construction, made possible by combining, and then melting, hundreds of glass rods...
Imagine its most classic form of a daisy, well, now focus on each individual petal and think of it as the thin slice of a very long and thin glass tube. Now think about how many petals make up a single flower, and then how many flowers make up the design. Isn’t it amazing to discover how much effort and patience it takes to prepare that Murrina pendant which you found yourself admiring full of curiosity, in front of that shop window?
Murrina lends itself to many creations
With the murrina glass you can really create anything: furnishing accessories, light points, sculptures … but absolutely the object that took the scene in its history in Venice was the Murrina pendant, and with it, a lot of items to wear and match.
On our website and in our shop on the Rialto Bridge you will find many different types, from simple Murrina amulets, rimless, irregularly shaped and often revisited in a geometric way; to traditional pieces, finished in silver settings or plated, up to the most valuable pieces, where the glasswork experience meets the goldsmith refinement, and the Murrina pendants are set in gold.
The murrina, more than a process, has become a true phenomenon of custom over the centuries, exalted and brought to the highest levels by the Murano Glass artisans, who competed against each other and challenged those who composed a more detailed design.
It can fully be called an evergreen that blends simplicity and elegance, the versatile par excellence. On the girl who dresses casual, T-shirt and jeans, as well as on the woman in a suit who wants to play down a top under a jacket which is too serious; perfect on a tanned cleavage, with that light dress to wear in the evening …IN SHORT, MURRINA IS THE NEW BLACK!
The advent of counterfeits. The ABC to buy an original piece
Today, the market is unfortunately contaminated by horrible imitations, produced in series, in countries that are mostly extra-European, made with materials of the lowest quality.
Often the design is not even made in mosaic, but simply printed in thousands of identical pieces, just to name one.
What I can recommend is to always ask for a guarantee of authenticity when choosing the piece or the set, to protect a conscious and intelligent purchase.
Let's preserve and defend craftsmanship
Like all ancient and noble arts, even that of glassmaking is slowly risking to disappear. The delicate existence of Murano is based on the balance of tradition. The skills and dexterity of execution are handed down from generations, from father to son, faithful to the ancient motif, which originally led Venice to choose an island, difficult to reach, as custodian of the secrets of the most incredible glass in the world.
I leave you telling you an anecdote: Murano glass masters built the hall of mirrors of Versailles in France. The Venetian Republic as a punishment for having exported state secrets, no longer allowed those artisans to return home, else death penalty!
Fourth rule: if you tried to be clever, the Venetian Republic did not forgive ... just like now (I'm obviously ironic).
Also for this choose the centenary experience of the Venetian Murano Glass masters and come to discover the incredible colors and reflections of our "Murrine". We are waiting for you!!!
The biggest hug in the world
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