The AV water glass is the result of a lucky coincidence: “My grandmother, Vera Papadopoli, wife of my grandfather Giberto Arrivabene, used to write her correspondences on stationary that was personalized with a monogram. It contained her two initials, V and A, and her family’s symbol, a crown, which was placed above the two letters.
When the founder of the Aman hotel chain – Adrian Zecha – saw the monogram while we were working on the renovation of Palazzo Papadopoli, he decided it was the perfect signature for Aman Venice, almost as if the glasses crafted for the hotel were created as a tribute to my ancestors”.
AV is made in crystal glass, slightly flared, onto which the two letters intertwine thanks to a delicate engraving process. The object is enriched by a border that is slightly larger than the glass itself, decorated by small fragments of hot sealed gold: the unpredictability with which the metal joins the glass makes every piece unique.
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.