Toni Zuccheri’s work for Venini was intensely sculptural. This Scolpito vase makes the point dramatically: dense, heavy, blue-black glass over thick clear crystal, its undulating form and transparent, creased centerline create the visual sensation of a living organic form. This level of abstract artistic creativity is usually not present in a vase, but it was exactly why Zuccheri was hired at Venini—to push boundaries and create a new vision for Venini glass. This he certainly did. Even today, collectors and institutions are just beginning to recognize the importance of his work. It should also be mentioned that despite Venini’s great commercial success in the 1960s, the experimental glass designed by Zuccheri was produced in very limited amounts.
Toni Zuccheri 1937–2008
Born in 1936 in San Vito al Taglimento, Toni Zuccheri was the son of renowned Italian metaphysical painter Luigi Zuccheri whose work was focused predominantly on the depiction of fantastic animals and birds. From an early age Toni demonstrated an innate capacity for drawing and possessed a great sensitivity toward nature and animals, birds in particular.
A few years after moving to Venice with his family in 1945, he enrolled in the Academy of Architecture and studied under Franco Albini, Ignazio Gardella, Carlo Scarpa and others. In the early 1960s he began to study and work at Venini where, in collaboration with Gio Ponti, he engaged in intensive experimentation with glass; the culmination was the development of Vetro Grosso, a new type of glass created from dense vitreous pastes combined with murrine, raw pigment, shards of Filigrana canes and fine wire mesh.
Auction Results Toni Zuccheri