Vera began as a commission piece: “a friend asked me specifically for a whiskey glass – solid therefore, with a certain heft. But I didn’t want it to be the usual sort of cut glass, and I decided to apply a certain amount of external grooving but to leave the cylindrical inside untouched and easy on the lips”.
The addition of a platinum border and a small oval hematite on the outer surface were extra embellishments for a piece originally designed for ‘shorts’ but equally suitable for water and wine.
“No doubt it wasn’t just random that I gave this glass a name shared by my sister and one of my daughters, two strong and sophisticated women alongside whom I live my life in this extraordinary city”.
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.