As I learn more about glass, I am seeing more and more examples of beautiful vessels that I will never be able to afford, but am loving to look at!

I have been learning about about Italian glassworks Venini lately, and wanted to show a few stunning examples.

The following beautiful vase is listed on Ebay at the moment, a ‘battuto’ vase designed by Carlo Scarpa in 1940.  The battuto technique involved grinding out the dimples seen by hand, and then sandblasting the finished piece to give it a satin effect. 



Below is a vase by Paolo Venini, in the ‘inciso technique’ – again marks ground into the glass by hand, though these ones straight.

This sommerso vase is blue and amber and cased in clear. You can see the incised thin lines better in the detail shots if you click on the image.      


More Venini Inciso vessels from Antique Helper. Purple and red Sommerso with incised surface.


Mentioned in a previous post, here are more of the gorgeous Tapio Wirkkala ‘incalmo’ Bolle vessels by Venini, which I covet dearly.    

Despard Gallery’s site describes the incalmo process as “A highly difficult technique that consists in jointing two blown glass shapes of identical diameter while hot, so as to obtain a single object composed of different parts, usually made of different colours.”


This incalmo below was designed by Gio Ponti.   Quite a different feel from Wirkkala’s clean, airy shapes. In contrast the one below feels quite solid, and chunkier!

There are actually 3 layers of glass in the base and stopper, as the red has been made opaque with a casing of white on the inside.

Trying to get the 3 layers of glass, all in different colours (therefore with different melting points) to fuse must have been a nightmare!

More Ponti from the Botterweg site.   


Incalmo Clessidra hourglasses by Paolo Venini from the 1960s.




I thought I would include this rare “Cappello del Doge”  vase, as it so different and contemporary looking.

By Thomas Stearns, 1962, this vase sold for a gargantuan $56 250 US at auction! Venini is definitely in the big leagues for glass collectors.