VENETIAN GLASS MOSAICS 1860-1917SHELDON BARR Book Number: 74260 Product format: Hardback
The mosaics of Venetian manufacturers are now, quite rightly, treasured for the splendid masterpieces they are, and it is they that form the subject of this richly illustrated and very highly informative volume. But, tragically, this was not always the case. The 1850s found Venice in a deplorable state. For instance, the condition of the antique mosaic decoration of the virtually abandoned Basilica of San Marco was alarming. The mosaics were literally falling from the façades, walls and domes. Fragments from both San Marco and Santa Maria Assunta on Torcello were being detached and sold to wealthy tourists. A lawyer called Antonio Salviati, who came from a modest background but had an appreciation of creative art, was horrified by the decline of the noble arts of glass and mosaic making and was determined to bring them back to life. He found two similarly inspired allies, the Muranese abbot and glass historian Vincenzo Zanetti and the Mayor of Murano, Antonio Colleoni, who wanted to resurrect the moribund industries in order to provide much-needed employment for the people of his island. This compelling account relates how these three men set about revitalizing a number of industries which, in the past, had been sources of both great wealth and pride. The recovered art of Venetian glass mosaics in the late 19th and early 20th centuries is now seen as one of the most important aesthetic achievements of the Victorian/Edwardian era. Neglected and under-appreciated for decades, surviving mosaics are now being cleaned and restored worldwide. This superb volume records many of their splendours, such as the amazing mural depicting Aurora and Cephalus on the vault of the avant-foyer of the Opéra Garnier, Paris, and the glorious maritime façade of the Palazzo Barbarigo Stabilimento Venice, and is a book to cherish. 143 pages 30.5cm x 24.5cm very lavishly illustrated in absolutely dazzling colour with list of illustrated examples of the mosaic makers' work.
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