• Press release
  • |
  • New York
  • |
  • For immediate release
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  • 12 April 2017

PRESS RELEASE: Carlo Scarpa: Visions in Glass 1926-1962 A Private European Collection

Dedicated Auction | May 4, 2017 | Christie's New York 

Detail: CARLO SCARPA (1906-1978)AN IMPORTANT ‘MURRINE OPACHE’ DISH, CIRCA 1940Estimate: $100,000-150,000

Detail: CARLO SCARPA (1906-1978)
Estimate: $100,000-150,000

Carlo Scarpa, circa 1970© Lino Bettanin - CISA A. Palladio- Regione Veneto

Carlo Scarpa, circa 1970
© Lino Bettanin - CISA A. Palladio- Regione Veneto

New York—Christie’s is pleased to announce the sale of Carlo Scarpa: Visions in Glass 1926-1962. A Private European Collection, taking place on May 4, 2017 at Christie’s New York. The sale features the only single-owner collection of works by the Venetian architect and designer Carlo Scarpa ever to be sold at auction to this day.

Encompassing approximately 90 pieces of Italian art glass, the collection provides an overview of the pioneering styles Scarpa created for M.V.M. Cappellin and subsequently Venini between the years 1926 and 1962. In his collaboration with the two glassmakers and in particular with Venini, Scarpa developed a modern vocabulary for the century-old techniques of glass making and paved the way for the resurgence of the island of Murano as a center of glass with a modern outlook. Deeply influenced by his training as an architect, Scarpa developed a range of new surface treatments and techniques, while being inspired by ancient Roman glass as well as Chinese works of art.

The pieces included in this collection encompass over forty years of his creations, offering a body of work which is unparalleled at auction. Incredibly modern and rich of a great variety of shapes, colors, and techniques, these objects laid the roots of contemporary glass-making in Venice and beyond. Highlights include An Important ‘Murrine Opache’ Dish, circa 1940 (estimate: $100,000-150,000), A Rare ‘Murrine Romane’ Vase, circa 1936 (estimate: $40,000-60,000); and A Rare ‘Velato-Inciso’ Vase, circa 1940 (estimate: $30,000-40,000).

Born in Venice, Carlo Scarpa was a unique figure among second generation Modern architects, being at once deeply embedded in the historical culture of Venice, and at the same time weaving the most Modern of spatial conceptions into its material fabric. At the very beginning of his career as an architect, the first traditional material Scarpa engaged with was glass, one of the most ambiguous, allusive and atmospheric materials employed in the making of architecture. In his work with Cappellin and Venini, starting in 1926, Scarpa explored the glass-making art, recovering ancient Roman techniques as well as discovering new methods of transforming glass.

The catalogue includes essays by Robert McCarter, Ruth and Norman Moore Professor of Architecture at Washington University in St. Louis and author of the book Carlo Scarpa (2013). In 2013, Scarpa was honored with the exhibition Venetian Glass by Carlo Scarpa: The Venini Company, 1932-1947 organized by the Cini Foundation in Venice which toured to The Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York.

Carlo Scarpa: Visions in Glass 1926-1962 A European Private Collection

4 May

20 Rockefeller Center, New York, NY, 10020

  • Auction

    May 4 2:00 PM Lots 1 - 88

  • Viewing

    Apr 29 10:00 AM - 5:00 PM
    Apr 30 1:00 PM - 5:00 PM
    May 1 10:00 AM - 5:00 PM
    May 2 10:00 AM - 5:00 PM
    May 3 10:00 AM - 5:00 PM

About Christie’s

Christie’s, the world's leading art business, had global auction, private and digital sales in 2017 that totalled £5.1 billion / $6.6 billion. Christie’s is a name and place that speaks of extraordinary art, unparalleled service and international expertise. Christie’s offers around 350 auctions annually in over 80 categories, including all areas of fine and decorative arts, jewellery, photographs, collectibles, wine, and more. Prices range from $200 to over $100 million. Christie's also has a long and successful history conducting private sales for its clients in all categories, with emphasis on Post-War & Contemporary, Impressionist & Modern, Old Masters and Jewellery.

Alongside regular sales online, Christie’s has a global presence in 46 countries, with 10 salerooms around the world including in London, New York, Paris, Geneva, Milan, Amsterdam, Dubai, Zürich, Hong Kong, and Shanghai.

*Please note when quoting estimates above that other fees will apply in addition to the hammer price - see Section D of the Conditions of Sale at the back of the sale catalogue.

*Estimates do not include buyer’s premium. Sales totals are hammer price plus buyer’s premium and are reported net of applicable fees.