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Barovier & Toso Furniture

Italian

Partnerships come and go within the community of glass-making artisans on the Venetian island of Murano, where business relationships seem as complex as the shifting alliances in the notoriously acrimonious Italian parliament. Formed in 1942 by members of families with centuries of experience in the craft, Barovier&Toso has proven to be one of the most enduring and prosperous Italian glass manufactories of recent decades. Under the nearly 50-year artistic directorship of cofounder Ercole Barovier (1889–1974), the company created buoyant traditional pieces such as chandeliers, sconces and other lighting fixtures, and it pioneered an array of innovative modernist glass designs with bold colors, patterns and surfaces.

The Barovier dynasty began in 1295, when Jacobello Barovier, mentioned in historical documents as a master glassblower, began pinching, cutting, blowing and twisting a molten mixture of sand and minerals into incandescent works of art. It remained entirely family-owned until the mid-20th century, when it merged with another glassworks to become Barovier&Toso.

To appeal to gentler, more conservative tastes, Barovier&Toso produced a range of lilting, sinuous lighting pieces that are often described as embodying “Liberty Style” — the Italian term for Art Nouveau, taken from the name of famed London department store Liberty & Co., which promoted 19th-century organic textile designs and Arts and Crafts-style furniture in the manner of William Morris. The hallmarks of the style in Barovier&Toso works are elements of glass in the shape of thick leaves, fronds and flower petals, deployed along with other naturalistic ornament in sconces, pendants and chandeliers.

Ercole Barovier began his personal aesthetic transition toward modernism in the 1930s with his Primavera series of vases and animal sculptures — idiosyncratic milky-white and clear glass filled with tiny bubbles and hairline interior fissures that he produced for Artisti Barovier, a firm headed by his father and uncle. Later, with Barovier&Toso, he would explore such novel styles as the mosaic-like Pezzato glass; fluid Spiral patterns; the pebbly textured Barbarico line and the complex, layered and highly colored abstractions of the Oriente series of vases and bowls.

Traditional or modern, Barovier&Toso — still under family control — has produced one of the finest and most diverse catalogues of Murano glass in the last 100 years.

Find antique Barovier&Toso chandeliers, serveware, decorative objects and more on 1stDibs.

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Creator: Barovier&Toso
Dealer: Rearview Modern
Pair of Barovier & Toso Murano Glass Sconces with Wood Frame, Italy c. 1950
By Barovier&Toso
Located in Fort Lauderdale, FL
Pair of Mid-Century Modern Barovier & Toso Murano glass sconces. The wall lights are comprised of handblown curved glass shades with a textur...
Category

1950s Italian Mid-Century Modern Vintage Barovier & Toso Furniture

Materials

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Barovier&toso furniture for sale on 1stDibs.

Barovier&Toso furniture are available for sale on 1stDibs. These distinctive items are frequently made of glass and are designed with extraordinary care. There are many options to choose from in our collection of Barovier&Toso furniture, although brown editions of this piece are particularly popular. We have 759 vintage editions of these items in-stock, while there is 7 modern edition to choose from as well. Many of the original furniture by Barovier&Toso were created in the mid-century modern style in europe during the 20th century. If you’re looking for additional options, many customers also consider furniture by Stilnovo, Gaetano Sciolari, and Vico Magistretti. Prices for Barovier&Toso furniture can differ depending upon size, time period and other attributes — on 1stDibs, these items begin at $90 and can go as high as $90,000, while a piece like these, on average, fetch $2,768.

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