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Murano Glass Female Bust...Possibly 1930s Martinuzzi

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Art Glass2758 of 22357Welz decor in a new shapeKralik double-gourd shape
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    Posted 3 years ago

    (58 items)

    We don't have a lot of Murano made glass in our collection but this was just too good to pass up last March. The iridescent cobalt bust appears to us to be a Nubian woman with headdress, or maybe more likely an Italian Renaissance woman. The bust is mounted on crystal base with with expanded gold leaf foil. The bottom is slightly concave. We believe based on our research that the artist may be Napoleone Martinuzzi and that this dates to the 1930s. We don't know this with certainty, so comments are welcome.
    5-1/4" (13.3 cm) tall

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    Help us close this case. Add your knowledge below.

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    1. Manikin Manikin, 3 years ago
      Stunning !!!!
    2. vetraio50 vetraio50, 3 years ago
      EXQUISITE !!?!!?!!
    3. racer4four racer4four, 3 years ago
      My only comment: exceptional!!!
    4. DuDa DuDa, 3 years ago
      The glass is solid. I don't see a way that the head could have been blown. It would have had to have been created by working a solid gather at the end of a punty rod, effectively a sculpture. Looking at it in hand, I can see no other way to have created this.

    5. DuDa DuDa, 3 years ago
      Similar use of the expanded gold is in evidence in pieces by Venini as early as 1925 when they were founded. Since both Martinuzzi and future partner in business Francesco Zecchin were both there, the gold process was well known to both well before the 1940s.
    6. DuDa DuDa, 3 years ago
      We don't think this is Japanese in style. We believe it Italian Renaissance or Nubian based upon the headdress as we stated in our original post. That was based on what were able to research and from the discussion in the Murano FB group back when we first obtained this in March. (Are you a member of that?)

      I wish we could show photos within these comments so that we would see examples of what we are discussing. :)
    7. DuDa DuDa, 3 years ago
      This is two pieces of glass combined as can be seen.

      My statement was "...more likely an Italian Renaissance woman." which is what I feel that the odds favor. The only way Nubian figured into the mix would be the broad nose, full lips, maybe the higher brow that would favor a likeness of African descent. Since Blackamoor figures are a somewhat common creation, a bust created in the form of a woman of African descent cannot be ruled totally out of the question. That would have to also be given consideration given the degree of emigration from Africa to Italy through Sicily historically given the proximity of the two lands. A person of African descent is not an uncommon sight in Italy. However, since we are speaking of Murano, I believe that a Renaissance period likeness would be far more likely.

      Regardless, Martinuzzi is only a supposition and as I said, this remains a mystery.
    8. DuDa DuDa, 3 years ago
      There would be no need for that. I would give this to you in order to spare your mother, lol.
    9. twentiethc, 3 years ago
      Most-likely Murano, but not as old as the 1930's. My guess is 1980's or more recent
    10. DuDa DuDa, 3 years ago
      @twentiethc ...I believe we are very familiar with your site if yours...2oth Century Glass, so we are just curious as we are trying to id the item...What in your opinion distinguishes 1980s or more recent work from that done in the 1930s with regards to this item?

      Please be as specific as possible.
    11. twentiethc, 3 years ago
      I am familiar with the site, but it is not mine. I have been buying / selling / collecting art glass, art pottery, and other decorative arts since I was 13 (35 years now).

      The style, and the use of that particular blue color (as opposed to black) lead me to believe the item is more recent than the 1930's. It may even be 2000+, but I feel more comfortable with my initial 1980's+ assessment. Earlier figures tend to be more detailed in terms of the head features. I have posted an example of an "earlier" style of Moorish head...
    12. twentiethc, 3 years ago
      Though I still believe yours is Murano, the texture, color and style of the head on your piece is very reminiscent of the works of Richard Jolley.
    13. Nathaniel.J, 3 years ago
      Wow! Beautiful!
    14. Melnyiam Melnyiam, 3 years ago
      Have you ruled out the possibility that it is from France?
    15. DuDa DuDa, 3 years ago
      What make you think French?
    16. twentiethc, 2 years ago
      I've run across a few more Murano references for you to consider … Ermanno Nason and Emilio Nason; both designing for Cenedese. The top portion seems to be very much in line with their style as is the coloring. However, I have not seen the any of their work with a base such as this one has.
    17. DuDa DuDa, 2 years ago
      @twentientc, thank you. I will look some more in that direction.
    18. DuDa DuDa, 2 years ago
      @renedijkstra, The headdress on this bust does not come anywhere close to either of the Japanese hairstyles you suggested. Thank you as always for your thoughts.
    19. vetraio50 vetraio50, 2 years ago

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