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Merletto Glass Art

Merletto is literally the Italian word for "lace".

In Glass Art, Merletto is a network of lattimo (opaque white glass) threads.

I became interested in Merletto because of the Fin Molds used to create them.

I asked Nikolaj Christensen about fin molds, and he emailed me this information, related to Merletto:

The main difference between this type of fin mold and a standard optic mold is the amount of distortion you are capable of producing.

The blade edge of a fin mold really hangs up the glass and lets you push that material far up towards the moile, in contrast to a Steinert mold.

The particular look is a little different, as well since the hot glass moving on either side of the fins' edges tend to produce much more of a folded look in comparison to an optic molded wave. Although they're the same family, there are some pieces that do indeed call for a fin mold. What comes to mind first is Seguso's "Merletto" series. There's a lot more to the pieces than just repeated stamping and twisting in the fin mold, but look close at the distortion of the lines. That's more fin than not, if you ask me.

Merletto Glass Art Image Merletto Glass Art Description
Archimede Seguso Merletto Art Glass Vase

Estimate: $6000 - $9000
Realized: $7500 SEPTEMBER 23, 2007

Vetreria Archimede Seguso, designed and executed by Archimede Seguso, Merletto, translucent blue internally decorated with unique lacework canes. paper label. 10 1/2"H. Very good condition with no chips, cracks or repairs.

Vase, Merletto Technique
Designed by Archemide Seguso for Vetreria Archemide Seguso. Circa 1952.
Height: 9 in.
Michael Schunke West Grove, PA Title: White Merletto Needle Nose 24.00 H X 10.00 W X 10.00 D Inches
ARCHIMEDE SEGUSO Freeform Merletto glass vase
Estimates: $3000 - $5000
Start Price: $1500
Sale Title: Sollo Rago Modern Auctions View entire catalog
Sale Location : Lambertville, New Jersey, USA
Sale Date 9:00 AM PST - Oct 26th, 2008
Description ARCHIMEDE SEGUSO Freeform Merletto glass vase in white and amethyst. Red foil label, Made in Murano Italy. 8 1/2" x 4 3/4"
Hammer Price $6,000

It's not unusual for glassblowing, particularly Venetian glassblowing, to be described in terms of dance (choreography comes with the territory, courtesy of the combination of teamwork and material temperament). In the case of Tom Rowney's work, the dance is elegantly mannered. Courtly, even.

Those already familiar with Tom's work will be aware of his fascination with Venetian technique, his embrace of the demandingly difficult, and his unwavering focus on accuracy and finesse - this new body of work introduces bold notes of colour and dainty 'merletto' (Venetian lace) to his signature reticello/latticino motifs. The inclusion of block colour marks a petit sojourn from the breathtakingly delicate pieces currently on show at the Seeds of Light exhibition at the ANU School of Art Gallery - and delivers a declaration of firm anchorage in this, a new millennium. There is a primal power to the colour that belies the meticulous streak, resulting in a strong body of curvaceously rhythmic work that is at once both classy and contemporary, with a full complement of serious 'wow' factor in the skill department.

"> Estimates: $4000 - $5000
Start Price: $2000
Sale Title: March Modern Auction Weekend View entire catalog
Sale Location : Lambertville, NJ USA
Sale Date 12:00 PM PST - Mar 8th, 2003
Description Fine, large, rare ARCHIMEDE SEGUSO four-sided merletto glass vase with white filigree and translucent amethyst decoration. Unmarked. 11 1/2" x 4 3/4"
Hammer Price $6,500
Glass Artist, ACT, Australia

Black & white merletto bowl 2008 #13
Blown glass (merletto caneworking technique)
36 x 35 cm


Price Realized (Set Currency)
Price includes buyer's premium
£3,000 - £4,000

Sale Information
20th Century Decorative Art And Design
28 October 2008
London, King Street

Lot Description
green glass and cane filaments cased in clear 4¼ in. (10.5 cm.) high; 9¼ in. (23.5 cm.) wide
underside engraved Seguso Archimede Gennaio 1953

Rosa Barovier Mentasti, Il Vetri di Archimede Seguso dal 1950 al 1959, Turin, 1995, pl. 34 (related design illustrated)

Harrtil Merletto Art glass vase, internal decoration of fine netting and pink and yellow shading. Possibly the best example of this technique. 12" tall. Excellent condition with almost no surface wear.
Estimate: 300.00-500.00



Czechoslovakian Harrtil merletto art glass bowl

n 1955 the Harrachov factory in Bohemia in Czechoslovakia launched a range of art glass called Harrtil. It was developed by designer Milan Metelak and factory manager Milos Pulpitel. The fine white mesh of woven glass fibres (known as "merletto" - net - in Italian) trapped within heavy glass casing can be seen in all the pieces in the series.

Harrtil is often mistaken for the merletto pieces of Archimede Seguso, but the mesh on the Seguso works are an illusion created by joining two blown bubbles with filigree lines, thus creating a net-like effect. Harrtil, on the other hand is made with a genuine net of woven glass.

Stunning Mid-century HARRTIL art glass bowl. Fine Merletto-like strands are symmetrically placed throughout the glass. Designed by Milan Metalak, the sealing of textile fiber within glass was a major turning point in the 50's for Czech art glass. Excellent shape with no chips or cracks.
Origin: Czechoslovakia
Maker: Harrachov
Dimensions: 2.5 in. tall, 5.75 in. wide
Color: Vaseline green
Age: 1955 - 1960

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