Tell us about yourself...I was born in 1944, on the Island of Burano, which is near Murano and situated in the lagoon of Venice, Italy. I began my apprenticeship in a glass factory, in Murano, at the early age of 11. To work in a glass factory was the only opportunity for most of the people of Burano and the surrounding area. When I was 19 years old, I bought my first torch. Initially, lampworking was a hobby which occupied me in the little time I had after a long day working in the factory. In 1974, I decided to leave the glass factory and I opened my own workshop in Venice (where I still work) and lampworking became my only true passion.
I am self-taught.
Why do you work with glass as a medium? I have always been attracted to the fire. Glass is a material that can be shaped and transformed. I have also always had an innate fascination for nature since I was a boy, when I went fishing with my dad and I could observe the fish, the birds, the insects and flowers of the lagoon of Venice. All my pieces show my love for nature which, I think, is the most difficult thing to imitate. I invented my own techniques, in order to make unique pieces, difficult to imitate and that has allowed me to be recognized internationally.
What is your dream project? During my long career of over 60 years, I was able to realize a lot of dreams; as every day you always learn something new, it is a continuing challenge to find new techniques...so each new piece is a dream come true.
If you weren't working in this field, what career would you choose? If I was not working with glass, I surely would had chosen a craft work, like wood carving, pottery, wrought iron or painting, where I could has express my manual skill. As I am a passionate lover of nature, I like taking care of my vegetable garden; I like to plant the seeds, see growing vegetables, collecting and eating them. I like making jam with the fruits of my garden and also tomato sauce. It's a great way to relax
Why are you a member of GAS? I have been a member of the Glass Art Society since 2001. In 2002 I was invited to do a demonstration during the GAS Conference in the Netherlands, it was the first conference in Europe! Then, I attended to the GAS Conference in Seattle (2003), in New Orleans (2004) as a visitor. I was invited again to do demonstrations in the GAS Conferences in Corning (2009) and in Chicago (2014) and again this year in Murano! Being a member of GAS gives artists a lot of opportunities, first of all meeting a lot of people from different countries and cultures and staying in touch with them. Being updated on international events and knowing what's going on in the glass community.
To learn more about Vittorio, go here.