Palazzo Grimani is a majestic building designed during the Renaissance by genius mannerist architect Michele Sanmicheli. “Palazzo Grimani is a part of my everyday life, because it located on the Canal Grande, in front of our house: I love the clean and formal lines of its architecture, and I love its luxurious elegance, which makes it particularly suitable for the engraving process”. The Grimani glass’ decoration is based on the structure of the Palazzo’s second Noble floor, which is enriched by large windows alternated by columns: the essential lines of the architecture are grinded in the glass in a way that almost makes the Palazzo emerge from the surface of the crystal and antique crystal glass that is hand blown in Murano. The glasses’ personality is so intense that it can undertake any role at the dinner table, or any other place in the house in the form of miniature buildings.
The life of Giberto Arrivabene Valenti Gonzaga is viscerally linked to Venice. His childhood memories, the most beautiful, are those that have taken place in the rooms of Palazzo Papadopoli, between frescoes of Tiepolo and family affection. “In my earliest memories Venice had other colours. It was more obscure, dramatic, decayed and deeply romantic – simply beautiful. There wasn’t the same light like there is today – more dazzling perhaps, but less poetic.”
Each piece derives from a watercolour sketch made by Giberto on tracing paper: “When I see something that inspires me, or an object that I like, I sketch and rework it – then move on to the realization of it.”
The glass, the main material in the collections, is worked exclusively in Murano. Each glass, each specific object, is blown by master glassmakers in the Venetian furnaces.
Giberto takes his watercolours to discuss with them and refine the project, check its feasibility, and to make eventual changes.