• Lino Tagliapietra, Mandara, 2005, glass, Smithsonian American Art Museum, Museum purchase made possible by the American Art Forum, 2011.6, © 2005, Lino Tagliapietra, Inc.

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Lino Tagliapietra is widely revered as a master of glass blowing, and is recognized for his unparalleled contributions to the studio glass movement through his teaching, which fostered a new generation of artists. Mandara is a seminal example of the innovative work Tagliapietra created since he decided to become a self-styled studio artist, after breaking from the factory-system in Murano, Italy, where he worked for more than forty years. Illustrated in this piece are classic Murano colors, and the 500-year-old incalmo technique, in which different glass bubbles, such as the blue and the yellow, are joined together to create a more distinctive work. Also present are rich examples of Tagliapietra's trademark "coldworking" techniques, in which patterns are cut into the glass after it has cooled. The fine grooves are sawn into the vessel and known as inciso—literally "incised." The scalloped texture is called battuto, which translates as "beaten" and highlights its resemblance to hammered metal. The elegance of Mandara's final form and the level of skill evident in its creation are uniquely identifiable to Tagliapietra. There is a maturity in this work that reflects his more than sixty years of experience.

Smithsonian American Art Museum, 2011

24 1/4 x 17 x 8 in. (61.6 x 43.2 x 20.3 cm)
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Smithsonian American Art Museum

Museum purchase made possible by the American Art Forum

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