The Biology of Murano Glass
Interview with Artemest artisan Lilla Tabasso on her distinct glasswork. Insects hidden in between leaves of glass come to life after years of studying the art of glassblowing and taking it to Milan.
by Annalisa Rosso
Lilla Tabasso’s work is the definition of learning by doing. The glassmith’s flower vases are incredibly true to life depicting small insects hidden in between flower petals, almost a nod to the atmosphere of Flemish paintings. To own this craft and develop her creativity wasn’t an easy journey for the Milanese artisan. In this interview, we unveil her very unique story.
LILLA TABASSO: I used to be a jewelry designer working with glass pearls made in Murano. At some point, I realized I could create unique pieces of glass myself making it easier to get the result I wanted such as translucent glass leaves.
A: How did you learn the difficult art of glassblowing
L: I took my first class back in 2000, it consisted in three to four hours of intensive work with a master glassblower. It was love and hate at first sight. It was incredibly frustrating at the beginning not to be able to give shape to what I had in mind. I didn’t give up though, I kept working on it.
A: When was the turning point?
L: At first I had to work with my lack of technique so ideas followed what I could actually do. I knew things had changed when I inverted the process. I never thought I could do crafts, I studied biology. As a little girl I nurtured a love of artwork. My parents were antique dealers going back many generations.
A: How did you realize you could turn your passion into a career?
A: What was the last object you bought for yourself?
A: New dreams?