TVGW Tours by Nexa - VENICE: Stringing the Beads of History

TVGW Tours by Nexa - VENICE: Stringing the Beads of History

The TVGW Tours by Nexa for Saturday 4 and 11 September are dedicated to Venetian glass beads, precious tiny spheres of history, which have been declared Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity by Unesco.

But why are glass beads so important? Starting from the fourteenth century, small glass items became a real commodity for trade and export to Africa, the Americas and India. And there are other aspects that are also relevant: bead-making is directly linked to the wealth of know-how and mastery of a material - Murano glass - and of an element, fire: perhaps for this reason, and for the light they seem to encapsulate, beads exude an almost magical power.

Skilled impiraresse string the tiny seed beads, the conterie, to create necklaces, earrings and accessories that perpetuate tradition, memory and expertise. The morning tour will take you through neighbourhoods teeming with workshops and precious art studios, historic buildings and hidden treasures that our guide will take you to visit, including a special glass bead studio: Le Burle di Monica. For almost twenty years a pole of attraction for connoisseurs and artists alike, Monica's workshop will give you the opportunity to witness up close a special kind of craftsmanship: our artisan works with seed beads, combining them according to shape and colour, adding inserts of crystal and semi-precious stones to create exquisite embroidery. Her bracelets, chokers and earrings are one-of-a-kind, authentic tiny wearable artworks, timeless objects that convey all the emotion of a centuries-old history.

During the afternoon tour, a visit to SUV, Salvatore and Antonella's workshop, where everything has remained unchanged since 1940 is an absolute must! Here you can breathe in the authenticity of artistic artefacts in which glass is mixed and mingled with other precious materials. The process used is lampworking, a technique which, with the help of fire, makes the glass rod "soft" and pliable. Countless nuances of colour are created by hot mixing different rods and customising each individual piece with decorations made from very fine coloured swirls and dots, fused onto the basic element, or by combining murrine, glass beads, gold or silver leaf.
Salvatore and Antonella also preserve a historical archive of beads of every size and colour, so if you are looking for something on which to feast your eyes and want to see something unique, this is the right place for you!

Photo ©
- Archive: SUV
- Banner: Le Burle di Monica
- Photogallery 1: SUV
- Photogallery 2: Le Burle di Monica
- Photogallery 3: SUV

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