Avventurina (gold flecked) Italian vintage glass menorah in a large size. most probably for a synagogue or institution. it is not signed but is of a very high quality. Large judaic pieces of this size and quality are quite rare.
The Venetian island of Murano has specialized in glassware for centuries. Murano’s glassmakers led Europe for centuries, developing or refining many technologies including crystalline glass, enamelled glass (smalto), goldstone, multicolored glass (millefiori), milk glass (lattimo), and imitation gemstones made of glass. Murano’s reputation as a center for glassmaking was born when the Venetian Republic, fearing fire and destruction of the city’s mostly wooden buildings, ordered glassmakers to move their foundries to Murano in 1291.
In the 18th century Murano glassmakers started to introduce new products such as glass mirrors and chandeliers to their production. In history these glass chandeliers became popular after the iron, wood and brass era of chandeliers, and they were such a success that instantly brought chandeliers to a new dimension.
In the first twenty years of this century the glass of modern style was produced at Murano quite discontinuously, for the most part on the occasion of the Venice Biennale exhibitions and of the Fondazione Bevilacqua la Masa at Ca' Pesaro.
Some of Murano's historical glass factories remain well known brands today, amongst them De Biasi, Gabbiani, Venini, Salviati, Barovier & Toso, Pauly, Berengo Studio, Seguso, Formia International, Murno Gladst, Simone Cenedese, Alessandro Mandruzzato, Vetreria Ducale, Estevan Rossetto 1950 and many others. The oldest glass factory is Antica Vetreria Fratelli Toso, founded in 1854.
Sommerso was developed in Murano during the late thirties and was made popular by Seguso d'Arte & Mandruzzato family in the fifties. This process is a popular technique for vases, and is sometimes used for sculptures. The technique of gold flecked glass is callen Aventurine or Avventurina and is a particularly rare and fine form of Murano glass.