This artistic short movie has been made with the aim to celebrate
the 100th Anniversary of the foundation of the FORLINI1921 craft workshop
and to tell the story of the four generations of the family who run it since 1921.
The history of the Forlini family with Murano glass is totally unusual and completely different from that of traditional Venetian families.
It all began in 1921 when Nazzareno Forlini from Ascoli Piceno, who works for the F.S. Ferrovie dello Stato (National Railways), is transferred to the Santa Lucia Station of Venice.
Once settled in the Serenissima, he meets a priest who is in charge of restoring ancient stained glass windows and chandeliers in churches and who has his small craft workshop in the basements and in the back of the Church of San Simeon Piccolo, right next to the station. Nazzareno therefore, who has always been passionate about manual and artisanal works, begins to work with him, thus learning the historical and traditional techniques and methods.
Over the years, after the priest’s death, he dedicates more and more time to this passion up to…
In the FORLINI1921 craft workshop the passing of the time is frozen: the generations of Forlini follow one another at work but the techniques and the materials used for the restoration and reconstruction have remained unchanged as those in the ‘700,’ 800 and ‘900 .
In one hundred years of history and activity, the Forlini Master Craftsmen have tirelessly continued to research and recover on the one hand old designs, projects and drawings of the various types of chandeliers, creating an important historical archive, and on the other hand the ancient and historical materials (glass structural components, glass decorative elements, glass and metal stems) with which the chandeliers were made, giving life to a collection / archive / catalog of inestimable value and of great historical-artistic value.
At the same time they perpetrated and maintained…
In one hundred years of history, the Master Craftsmen of the Forlini family have restored and especially reconstructed countless chandeliers and it is impossible to determine a quantity.
Since the engine of this work for the Forlini’s family has always been PASSION, their greatest satisfaction and the only important thing to them was to deliver the finished works in a workmanlike manner to their customers (whether they were private individuals, public organizations, churches or museums).
Furthermore, until the 1970s it was first almost impossible and later prohibitive to realize photographic documentation of own’s works by a craft company. Especially since up until those years, the best reference was word of mouth among satisfied customers.
Only since the 1980s Master Craftsman Roberto Forlini began photographing his works, on the one hand to start keeping track of the work of the family and to keep the tradition alive, on the other because with the massive advent also in Italy of marketing and advertising even on a daily basis (and no longer just for multinational companies) this is useful as a reference for acquiring new customers. Even if word of mouth always remains the best tool in artistic and craft sectors of great value.
Here below is a small selection of photographs of some chandeliers reconstructed by the Master Roberto Forlini over the last few decades, up to now.
Over the course of four generations of history and activity, the Master Craftsmen of the Forlini family have continued to tirelessly research and recover old designs and projects of the various types of chandeliers, creating an important historical archive.
These drawings come from the most disparate sources and are mainly sketches and initial drafts and/or portraits at the end of the work, presumably made by the master glassmakers of the old furnaces as a project as well as by the shop assistants for the purpose of archiving.
These are not the initial original designs of the first Murano chandeliers made by names such as Briati, Salviati etc. However, they represent the work of the brilliant and tireless glass masters of Murano who over the centuries from the 18th to the early 20th century have continued to develop and pass on the tradition of this Venetian artisan art.
Here below is an excerpt of the drawings from the FORLINI HISTORICAL ARCHIVE, representing the models most requested by customers and most frequently reconstructed by Master Craftsman Roberto Forlini.
A fundamental aspect of the passion and activity of the Forlini’s, a determining and very important element in the history of the family, consists in the constant commitment to the finding, recovery, conservation and cataloging of all the historical and ancient components of the chandeliers (cups, leaves, flowers, collars, bushes, cornucopias, crests, arms etc all made of Murano glass, iron stems, pewter and iron bushes).
These treasures come on the one hand from antique chandeliers too damaged or broken to be restored, result of clearing of disused private Venetian buildings or of exchanges with customers, and on the other hand from residues of contemporary or more historical production by old Venetian workshops and ancient Murano furnaces that occasionally needed to free their warehouses to make room for newer and current productions.
Here below is a small representative selection of images of the most ancient and precious Murano glass components for chandeliers, from the FORLINI HISTORICAL COLLECTION, which are used in the FORLINI1921 craft workshop by the Master Craftsman for reconstructions and restorations.
This short documentary has been made, in the occasion of the celebration of
the 100th Anniversary of the foundation of the FORLINI1921 craft workshop,
together with two of the world’s leading scholars of the history of Murano glass and Venice chandeliers,
Ms. Rosa Barovier Mentasti and Ms. Cristina Tonini,
with the aim of telling one of the most beautiful tales of Venice
and making the whole world aware of another small piece of the fantastic Italian culture.
If you have always dreamed of having an authentic historical Venetian chandelier to give a touch of Italian luxury to your home, or if you have recently purchased a luxury estate that deserves to have its interior enriched with a historic piece of art of great value, or on the other side if you already own a damaged or deteriorated antique Venetian chandelier that you absolutely want to restore and return to its former glory, do not hesitate to contact us to evaluate your idea, or simply to have further information.
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