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Demetrio Paparoni Defines Glasstress 2011

Demetrio Paparoni brings his creative expertise and vision to Glasstress 2011. Here, he explains the undeniable ties between art, architecture, and design.

Demetrio Paparoni with Glasstress artist, Domenico Bianchi

Demetrio on Glasstress 2011
The theme of this year’s exhibition is the complex relationship that ties art, design and architecture together in an age thought to have moved beyond modernism. Comparing the opinions of various curators, Glasstress addresses this issue through glass sculptures specially made by major artists on the contemporary scene and through objects and sculptures made by designers, whose research was influenced by the formal aspect of the use of the object.

Putting glassworks that respond to such profoundly different concepts next to each other in the same show is the equivalent of reviving critical issues that are far from resolved: What makes an object that is formally conditioned by its function a work of art? To respond to the spirit of the time, must a work refer only to itself? Can we say today that the function of a design object is itself enough to make the work alien to the spirit of the time regardless of its formal qualities? These questions, which are the basis of the 2011 Glasstress project, call into question the notion of “art for art’s sake” so dear to the 20th century avant-gardes.

Glasstress 2011 offers the viewer food for thought about complex themes. It poses the need for a critical reassessment of the main tenets of modernism, the majority of which were still very much present in the art of the eighties and questioned in the next decade by the second generation of post-modernism. Glasstress 2011 demonstrates just how topical these themes still are and the need to explore them further.

About Demetrio Paparoni

Demetrio Paparoni was born in Siracusa in 1954. He lives in Milan. An art critic, essayist and exhibition curator, he is the author of monographs and books on contemporary art theory. In the early 1980s he created the Tema Celeste magazine, which he directed until April 2000. He was, among other things, commissioner for the Italian pavilion of the Venice Biennale in 1993. He taught the History of Contemporary Art at the Faculty of Architecture in Catania from 1996 to 2008.

90 Minutes – Suspended In Air

Introducing “Prometheus – Landscape II.” This is Glasstress 2011 artist, Jan Fabre’s latest stage production, scheduled to premiere at the Alexander Kasser Theater at Montclair State University January 20th-30th, 2011.


The central image of the show is of Prometheus, bound and suspended high above the stage throughout the full 90-minute production. Symbolizing the artist bound by society’s contradictions: freedom of expression versus obedience to order, Prometheus, the bringer of fire to man, is also a symbol of creation and destruction. The story was concieved, co-written, and directed, and set directed by Fabre.

Jan Fabre Set Design

Jan Fabre (born 1958, Antwerp, Belgium) is a Belgian multidisciplinary artist, playwright, stage director, choreographer and designer. His decoration of the ceiling of the Royal Palace in Brussels Heaven of Delight (made out of one million six hundred thousand jewel-scarab wing cases) is widely praised. In 2004 he erected Totem, a giant bug stuck on a 70 foot steel needle, on the Ladeuzeplein in Leuven.

Nabil Nahas’ First Time

Earlier this week in Murano, we had an incredible visit from prominent Lebanese painter, Nabil Nahas. Nabil grew up in Cairo and Beirut, moved to the United States to study and earned his MFA from Yale University. Encounters with contemporary painters at Yale influenced Nahas to move to New York where he has exhibited regularly and received critical acclaim for his work. Nahas uses geometric motifs and decorative patterns inspired by the rich history of Islamic art. At the same time, Nahas is thoroughly educated in the tradition of Western abstract painting. These two poles combine quite provocatively in his work, seamlessly fusing into brightly-colored paintings suggestive of the richness of nature. In his most recent work, Nahas surprisingly introduces recognizable forms of cedar, pine and olive trees native to Lebanon, his most direct reference yet to his native land. His retrospective, Nabil Nahas: Perpetual Energy opened this summer is the inaugural exhibition at the Beirut Exhibition Center, an exhibition created by eminent American art critic Vincent Katz and sponsored by Solidčre.

Nabil’s recent visit to Berengo Studios to create his works for Glasstress 2011 was also the artist’s first time creating works in glass. We are lucky to have his debut exploration in a new medium and proud that he, along with Marya Kazoun, will represent Middle East excellence at the exhibition.

1300 Degrees of Separation

Murano Glass meets Paul Cocksedge and Louise Campbell

Earlier this month, Paul Cocksedge, and Louise Campbell stopped by for a visit to Berengo Studios to discuss their upcoming exhibits for Glasstress 2011.

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About Paul Cocksedge
Reflecting on abstract painting and its place in contemporary society, Paul Campbell explores abstraction’s most poetic, frankly beautiful aspects, while opening up the nearly century-old practice to up-to-date, aleatory experiments with wry techniques and an intensely felt rhetoric of painterly process. Eschewing the politics of “touch” which were the cornerstone of Modernist abstraction, Paul Campbell marks his carefully prepared oil and wax canvases with such every day objects as ten cent string, tennis balls, and remote-control cars, letting the careening traces of paint build up a rich and controlled chaos. “I use just about anything I can to paint with,” Campbell has said about his direct, rhythmic, yet extremely fine-tuned method. “It is a way of getting away from my hand to liberate the painting, a combination of a methodological and intuitive painterly approach.”

About Louise Campbell
Louise Campbell was born in Copenhagen in 1970. Being the daughter of a Danish father and an English mother, she grew up and was educated in both countries. After graduating from the London College of Furniture in 1992, she returned to Denmark and continued her studies in Industrial Design at Denmarks Design School, graduating from here in 1995. She set up her own studio in 1996, from where she has worked independently since. Focus is on furniture and lighting design, but the studio is increasingly involved in product design and interior design projects as well. The client list is long and varied, including companies such as Louis Poulsen, Zanotta, HAY, Royal Copenhagen, Holmegaard, Stelton, Muuto, Interstop and The Danish Ministry of Culture. Louise Campbell’s work is playful and experimental, and is increasingly gaining a reputation for gently twisting not only every day objects and situations, but also materials and manufacturing processes in new directions.

Design Life : Miami – Day 2

Another incredible day at Design Miami, book ended at the beginning being interviewed by Whitewall Magazine and Surface Magazine, and at the end visits from Betsey Ruprecht, wife of Sotheby’s William Ruprecht and owner of Decorative Antiques, Ltd, and Pharrell Williams of the Neptunes. Who knew that Pharrell – who didn’t want to be photographed – has long desired to work with glass? He also posted a picture of Joost van Bleiswijk’s work on his blog.

Still in the midst of the busy day, we all had a chance to make it over to the Art Basel show floor to see some incredible works and meet up with friends!

Adrian Berengo and Susan Scherman with Orlan!

Joost explains the halo during his interview with ArtScoutTV!

Adriano Berengo with the legendary Michael Starn

Venice Projects with Betsey Ruprecht

Adriano Berengo and Susan Scherman with Glasstress 2011 and Art Basel artist, Shi Youg

Of course Joost has to check his Facebook!

Kiki and Joost with journalist from Surface Magazine

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If you haven’t realized by now, the next Glasstress exhibit will take place in Venice, Italy from June – November. We have a great line up of the world’s top artists, architects, and designers shaping their creativity through a very expressive, contemporary medium – glass. Luckily for us, it doesn’t hurt to be located in one of the world’s most amazing cities. But don’t take our word for it, see the beauty of Venice in the video below and hopefully we’ll see you there!

Jan De Vleigher Joins Glasstress 2011

He has exhibited works all over the world – from Paris to Stockholm,  Chicago to San Francisco, Brussels to Barcelona.  The wonderfully talented and prolific Jan De Vliegher paints a wide array of subjects and topics, including statues, landscape, the sea, still life, and even glass, and now is one of the newest additions to the Glasstress 2011 exhibit.  His contributions will to the exhibit will include original works in glass as well as an installation of his many his astonishing works in paint.

Jan will also be joining Venice Projects and other Glasstress artists like Koen Vanmechelen, Marya Kazoun, Jan Fabre, Hye Rim Lee, Charlotte Hodes, and Jaume Plensa at this year’s Toronto Art Fair (booth #518), which takes place from October 28-Nov 1, 2010.