Glass blowing by Vanessa Mitrani - creator of the DesignerBox #43
Vanessa Mitrani invites Designerbox subscribers to discover the glass blowing universe with Gravity Drops, the last collection born of the Gravity family: a table carafe of an elegant height that seems to defy the laws of gravity from the top of its wooden base.
Vanessa Mitrani has inherited from her mother, a lab researcher, a passion for animals as well as the love to experiment and «to do». A student at ENSAD (Paris Decorative Arts University) specialising in furniture design, she happily escapes the classrooms to experience craft techniques in workshops, including glass techniques. It is therefore by «doing» that the designer started working with glass, her professional love affair. A combination of melting and difficult to work with materials yet sublime for their fragile link, blown glass has captivated Vanessa Mitrani for almost 20 years. As the saying goes, for love to last, it must constantly reinvent itself: when it comes to glass creations, the designer is never short of ideas.
In her Pantin showroom/office/workshop, there is electricity in the air. From shelves, stacked with various handmade objects, bearing witness to the many trips and other dry animals, remnants from laboratories, to aquariums of aquaponics tropical plants, everything here shows a fierce craving for life experiences. The glass objects gallery embellishing the display therefore tirelessly grows with the passionate experiments of the creator.First of all, glassblowing takes place outside. From her first tests under the watchful eye of her teacher and master glassmaker Pedro Veloso, Vanessa Mitrani understood that she would not be blowing the glass herself.
«I’m a designer, not a craftswoman.»
The repetitive aspect of the artisanal work and the intensive training combined with the dexterity required to gather and handle the glass are integral to the story behind her creations, but they are not the basis of her work, which is above all the result of unbridled imagination. The theme of freedom has actually brought her the first success. By enclosing the glass blown into a raw black opaque metal cage, she reveals a fluid, almost “elusive” beauty. Passionate and obsessive, the designer continues to develop this technique of «constraints» by «blowing in pretty much everything»: chains, forged iron, bronze, leather, fibre …All opaque materials crossing her path are good and become beautiful objects highlighting the glassmaker’s know-how. Her immediate success and increasing orders drive herto organise her work.
Designer and young entrepreneur, she’s auditioning artisans for her factory in Portugal where an outstanding glass blower works only for her; this allows her even today to further explore the constraint theme in complete freedom. Without any creative limitations, Vanessa Mitrani never hesitates to explore new materials and techniques. After a trip to Asia, she enters her «Japanese porcelain – fish» period, which will result into a representational fun animal collection, with fish porcelain playing with glass, carelessly passing through the material to highlight once again her craftsmanship.Latest exploration: the footprint theme, which has earned her a great success today, even if, in reality, it is not that recent.
Her collection of vases and lanterns, «Trace», was already revealing the glass surfaces of the iron collar in which they had been blown, leaving to admire only the ridges it had set. The most recent series, «Gravity», dedicated to sculptural pieces and tableware, employs the same principle by blowing the glass onto such surfaces. To denote the weight of the material in its original and liquid state, the designer inserts into the footprints of the bronze pedestals, marble or wood whose strength contrasts with the fluid and flowing aspect of the glass that is full. Her work sold all around the world at reputable distributors, ranging from Cassina to Barney’s and Conran Shop, (Roche Bobois, Merci, Bergdorff Goodman, Camerich, Lane Crawford, Minotti, Le Bon Marché, Kravet, Natuzzi, Pianca), the designer invites Designerbox subscribers to discover the glass blowing universe with Gravity Drops, the last collection born of the Gravity family: a table carafe of an elegant height that seems to defy the laws of gravity from the top of its wooden base.
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