2/52 Glass Production, Murano

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Furnace, Studio Berengo, Murano. Copyright Fiona Michie.

The week before last I visited Studio Berengo on Murano to photograph glassmaking. Nothing prepares you for the heat which hits you in a glassworks. Despite knowing that fornace (furnaces) were involved, I was still amazed by how anyone could do physical work in such heat. The only way I stayed vertical during the 45 minutes or so that I was in the furnace room was by shooting next to an open window or the door.

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Molten glass being tweaked and twisted into shape. Copyright Fiona Michie.

Due to my pathetic intolerance of the heat of the furnaces, I spent a lot of time watching and photographing the guy whose work station was nearest the door. I found the molten glass he was working with mesmerising. It is bizarre that something so malleable ends up as a very hard substance. I love the glow of the glass here and the way you can see its squishy nature.

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Molten glass ready for addition to a piece in progress. Copyright Fiona Michie.
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Base being added to stem. Copyright Fiona Michie.
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Firing to fuse the multiple square pieces together. Copyright Fiona Michie.

These three images show a work in progress on another work station (yes, the one nearest the window!). Squares of molten glass were joined to the hardened pieces and then fired using a blowtorch to fuse them together seamlessly. The top picture is the molten glass fresh from the furnace, the middle is the moment the base is joined to the stem and the last captures the glow of the yellow glass as it is being heated.

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4 comments on “2/52 Glass Production, Murano

  1. Wonderful stuff at Berengo…especially the almost two-dimensional image of the glowing orb with the glass shears in silhouette. As for the others, I made similar shots that day, but for the glowing orb, my highest praise: wish I had made that. Baci, F&J

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