Murano glass has been heard about, if not all, then many. This ancient Venetian technology is still actively used in the production of decorative items, jewelry and fine tableware. But few people know that Murano glass can be different – colored, transparent, gilded and enameled, filigree, with thin streaks in the mass, reminiscent of a cobweb, and agate, aventurine and mosaic. The latter includes glass produced using the millefiori technology, which means a thousand colors. It is in this unique technique that Lauren Stump, an American glassblower, creates her paintings.
Lauren Stump ‘s technique
Actually, Lauren Stump’s technique is not so unique – the Venetians just took the technology known to the ancient Egyptians and simply brought it to perfection. Moreover, at one time the secret of “millefiori” was considered lost, and it was restored only in the 19th century. The method of production of such products is rather complicated – it is somewhat reminiscent of the technique of making Japanese rolls or multilayer muffins, which give a magnificent appetizing pattern on the cut.
How does a millefiori artist work?
First, he draws a draft sketch of the future masterpiece, then he makes glass rods of the desired configuration, and from them he puts a picture in a container. This is followed by baking until the molten glass turns into a monolith. The still soft workpiece is removed and cut across. The result is enchanting – on each slice of murrina, the viewer sees the finished picture.
Initially, the technique was used to make small ornaments – beads, costume décor elements, and the like. Then the craftsmen began to use the method for the production of larger items – paperweights, vases, chandelier decor. But if the classical works in the “millefiori” resemble rather a colored mosaic of various fragments. Then the glassblower Lauren Stump makes true masterpieces. His works are mini-canvases, with images of people’s faces, wonderful landscapes, flowers and scene scenes.
The most famous work of the master Stump today is “Madonna in the grotto”. An incredibly graceful glass picture looks like it was painted on a glass surface. You can see the smallest details, soft color transitions, even the expressions on the faces of the Virgin and the angels are clearly distinguishable. Like other millefiori masters, Lauren Stump creates her works by hand. This means that each masterpiece is truly unique and unrepeatable.