Murano really is the island of glass. The Venice glass industry grew up and blossomed here having been transferred from the 'mainland' by the Serenissima, such was the worry over the concentration of furnaces in the city and the risk of fire.
Murano Glass Making
Soon famed across the Mediterranean and beyond, the industry and artisans of Murano soon became regulated with great firmness to stop trade secrets falling prey to industrial espionage, especially by the French.
Anyone who betrayed the techniques or accepted employment abroad was deemed a traitor and ordered to return given the option of dead or alive. Today, there seems to be nothing else but shops, warehouses and furnaces although at the height of the Republic of Venice Murano was popular with nobles. It was here they relaxed in their purpose built garden villas.
One young glass blower was Albino Luciani better known as Pope John Paul I. As a boy he had worked with his father in the glass factories before his destiny called. Becoming Pontiff for just thirty four days, he had been first Patriarch then Cardinal of Venice.
A number of vaporetto water boats can take you to the island, but why not walk to Venice's northern shore and take the short hop from Fondamenta Nove and via the Marani canal. Murano is just a kilometer away and the boat also continues on to Burano and Torcello.
The image is a glass sculpture by Denise Gemin of the Fornace Mian in Murano. It consists of 170 blown glass flame like elements in typically fire like colors.
Consorzio Promovetro Murano - www.muranoglass.com
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