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LINO TAGLIAPIETRA IN RETROSPECT: A MODERN RENAISSANCE IN ITALIAN GLASS

September 26th – December 27th, 2009
Palm Springs Art Museum

This exhibition, a comprehensive forty-year retrospective of Tagliapietra's art and career, documents and celebrates his remarkable achievements as a contemporary artist. The exhibition includes 169 art works that range from a room-size installation of his impressive Endeavor boat series, to groupings of masterful goblets, to elegant and evocative sculptural forms. Tagliapietra is widely revered as the master of glassblowing, an inspiring teacher and the elder statesman who is credited with shaping the course of international Studio Glass.

Born in 1934 on a small Italian island, Tagliapietra rose from a working class family and a minimal education to become an internationally acknowledged glass artist and maestro, an honor given to the most highly recognized of Italian glassmakers. Tagliapietra worked exclusively on the island of Murano until he received an invitation to demonstrate glassblowing techniques at the Pilchuck Glass School in Stanwood, Washington in 1979. While at Pilchuck, he created unique glass objects using techniques that had rarely, if ever, been seen in the United States. The knowledge he shared, which traditionally had been regarded as Italian trade secrets, helped the artists of the Studio Glass movement develop the technical skills that allowed them to fully realize the potential of glass as a sculptural medium. Tagliapietra combines techniques that are rooted in the thousand-year-old Venetian glassmaking tradition and brings fresh and creative perspectives to art in glass with unabashed beauty and exquisite craftsmanship.

The exhibition is documented by a catalogue with essays by Susanne K. Frantz, former curator of 20th- century glass at The Corning Museum of Glass, and Dr. Helmut Ricke, internationally acclaimed scholar and glass historian. A detailed chronology of Tagliapietra's life and his contributions to the history of the visual arts are included as well as a memoir and technical overview authored by Dante Marioni, renowned Seattle glassmaker and early Tagliapietra student. A DVD of Tagliapietra demonstrating his signature glassmaking techniques accompanies the catalogue.

ORGANIZED BY THE MUSEUM OF GLASS IN TACOMA, WASHINGTON, THIS EXHIBITION IS SPONSORED BY REBECCA AND JACK BENAROYA, THE PAUL G. ALLEN FAMILY FOUNDATION, RUSSELL INVESTMENTS, WINDGATE CHARITABLE FOUNDATION, HERITAGE BANK, AND THE BOEING COMPANY.

THE PRESENTING SPONSOR OF THE PALM SPRINGS ART MUSEUM PRESENTATION IS THE HELENE E. BERMAN CHARITABLE REMAINDER TRUST. ADDITIONAL SUPPORT PROVIDED BY THE MUSEUM'S CONTEMPORARY ART COUNCIL, ANNETTE BLOCH, AND THE FAYE AND HERMAN SARKOWSKY EXHIBITION FUND, AS WELL AS REBECCA AND JACK BENAROYA, DAVID KAPLAN AND GLENN OSTERGAARD, HAROLD MATZNER, NEWMAN'S OWN FOUNDATION/PATRICIA AND ARTHUR NEWMAN, GLADYS RUBINSTEIN, THELMA AND GILBERT SCHNITZER, BARBARA AND ROBERT FREMONT, THE ART ALLIANCE FOR CONTEMPORARY GLASS, LEISA AND DAVID AUSTIN, LIBBY AND BURTON HOFFMAN, AND COOKIE AND MIKE MILLER.