Venetian Glass of the 1890s

— how many things are not allowed to be used?

venetian glass

“Considering the short life [of glass] due to its fragility, one cannot and must not give it too much love, and one must use it and understand it as an example of the life of man and of the things of this world which, though beautiful, are transitory and frail.” - Vannoccio Biringuccio, De la pirotechnia (1540)

I found this quote in Venetian Glass of the 1890s: Salviati at Stanford University. Over two hundred pieces are stored in one collection, carefully preserved and displayed at an exhibition that happened for several months in 2002. The collection was once double the size, but after an earthquake most of the pieces were destroyed.

It is ironic that the quote above appeared on the first pages. These items were displayed publicly for a short period of time, but for most of their existence, they were kept safely in storage never to be used.

I can see how difficult it can be to drink from a $1000 goblet. But if it’s going to perish, why not?

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