Vintage Murano glass is specially created and treated on the Isle of Murano in Italy. Whether collecting vintage Murano glass for its aesthetic value or its historical art significance, look for pieces filled with exquisite colours and designs. Murano glass reached its height of popularity in the 1940s; glass from this time period is highly sought after by collectors, especially pieces from Venini.
Vintage Murano glass can be found in a wide array of forms, including Murano glass bowls, chandeliers, vases, lamps, and other decorative pieces. This colourful and delicate Italian glass is also popularly crafted into statuettes of animals and godly Murano glass figures as well as jewellery fashion pieces. Murano glass beads can be purchased as separates or as a complete beaded bracelet, necklace, or set of earrings.
Murano refers to an origin rather than a brand name; hence, authentic Murano glass is strictly made on the island of Murano. Vintage Murano glass often features a paper label; these labels were used until the 1970s. When shopping, carefully inspect the design of the label, as this can help indicate the time period in which it was made. It is also important to examine the Murano glass for a designer's signature. The signature should be handwritten, and thus unique to each piece, rather than mass-produced.
Vetro Artistico Murano
Those looking for vintage Murano glass should avoid pieces that are marked "Vetro Artistico Murano". While authentic and of high value, this wording indicates that the piece is more modern, rather than vintage. This contemporary trademark was created under Italian law to help buyers avoid purchasing fakes; however, factories on the island are not required to abide by this trademark. Similarly, buyers should avoid pieces that are marked "Murano Style". While these pieces may look like Murano, they are not authentic and often produced in other countries or differing areas of Italy; these do not hold any value.
One of the most popular colour choices is aquamarine; this colour is created through the use of copper and cobalt compounds. Ruby, turquoise, and shades of purple and pink tend to follow suit in popularity. Some Murano glass comes in block colouring, while other pieces feature a multitude of colours that, when blended, allow for intricate designs.
Murano Sommerso, or sunken glasses, is a form of Murano glass that consists of layering in contrasting colours. In the 1950s, Seguso d'Arte popularised this technique, which was developed in the late 1930s. Artisans dip coloured glass into molten glass and then blow the mix into the desired shape. Often, the outermost layer is clear. The Sommerso technique is commonly seen on Murano glass vases and Murano Sommerso glass bowls.