"Through Put"- Murrini/Millefiori

25 CGS member glass artists share work with us that explores the world of Murrini/Millefiori.

Murrine are colored patterns or images made in a glass cane that are revealed when the cane is cut into thin cross-sections. One familiar style is the flower or star shape which, when used together in large numbers from a number of different canes is called millefiori.

Murrine production first appeared in the Middle East more than 4,000 years ago and was revived by Venetian glassmakers on Murano in the early 16th century.

Once murrine have been made, they can be incorporated into a glass vessel or sculpture in several ways. A number of murrine may be scattered, and then picked up on the surface of a partially-blown glass bubble. Further blowing, heating, and shaping on the marver will incorporate the murrine completely into the bubble and then the formed.

Alternatively, the murrine can be arranged in a compact pattern and then heated in a furnace until they fuse into a single sheet. The sheet can be formed over a mold (such as a bowl shape) and further heated so that the murrine are slumped to take the form required.

Another technique using a sheet of murrine made as above is to make a small disc (collar) of molten glass on the end of a blowing iron, then roll the disc along one edge of the sheet, picking up the sheet on the blowpipe in the form of a cylinder. The end of the cylinder opposite the blowpipe can be squeezed together and sealed. With further heating, the sealed cylinder can be blown and formed into any shape a glassblower can make.

Exhibition launched on 24th July 2018