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Manufacturer: Fratelli Toso
Start year: 1854
End year: 0
After the fall of the Serenissima in 1797, Venice and all its islands were deeply damaged by the devastating occupation of Napoleone. Murano as well lived through a dark period which lasted until the middle of the 19th century: many glass factories closed down and many glass masters emigrated abroad. In a short time artistic glass-making techniques and culture were forgotten. It was in this critical period that Fratelli Toso company moved its first steps: in 1854 Pietro Toso`s sons Ferdinando, Carlo, Liberato, Angelo, Giovanni, Gregorio started up Fratelli Toso, which was based in the former Scuola Grande San Giovanni dei Battuti. In that period glass production quality was quite low all over Murano since the ability of making glass by hand had been lost. Most of glass pieces were made for domestic or pharmaceutical use: bottles for the Carmelite friars` lemon-balm and flasks or smaller bottles for oils and tinctures. But Toso brothers, thanks to the fundamental help and collaboration offered by Vincenzo Zanetti, worked hard to recover techniques and know-how to reproduce precious glass pieces produced by hand prior the Serenissima fall. They exercised mostly in the evening, after working hours: slowly they increased their skills and capability of making glass by hand, so much that in 1864 Fratelli Toso realized an amazing massive chandelier to be given to the Murano Glass Museum for its inauguration. The chandelier is still at the Glass Museum; Fratelli Toso received their first gold medal thanks to this excellent masterpiece. This is the reason why Fratelli Toso company is credited with being upholder for the revival of artistic glass-making in Murano. They started a process of artistic renewal which quickly involved many other glass factories. From that moment on Fratelli Toso production met great success: thanks to excellent designers and glass masters Fratelli Toso won several awards at International Exhibitions and recognition worldwide. Designers involved: Giusto Toso, Renato Toso, Noti Massari.



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