One of our favourite shows in Venice at the moment is “Glasstress” – an ambitious exhibition that explores the endless creative possibilities of glass. Spread across two historic locations – Palazzo Franchetti in Venice and an old furnace in Murano – the exhibition is an initiative of Fondazione Berengo, a foundation that is aiming to breathe new life into the Murano glassblowing industry.
The current exhibition features work by 33 renowned contemporary artists from around the world, including Ai Weiwei, Jan Fabre, Paul McCarthy and Laure Prouvost. With little or no previous experience of working with glass, these artists were invited by Fondazione Berengo to collaborate with expert artisans from Murano, in order to create new works for the show. The resulting sculptures are a highly eclectic and experimental mix of styles and designs, defying the stereotypes usually associated with the ancient craft, and pushing the boundaries of both contemporary art and glass.
If you have time, be sure to head to Murano, where French artist Loris Gréaud has brought an abandoned glass furnace back to life with his beautiful immersive exhibition The Unplayed Notes Factory, curated by Nicolas Bourriaud.
Glasstress 2017 is on view until 26 November 2017. For more information, visit www.glasstress.org