CONTRASTO by WonderGlass @ Istituto dei Ciechi - Photo by WonderGlass.

CONTRASTO by WonderGlass @ Istituto dei Ciechi – All photos by WonderGlass.

Design – Within the historic walls of the nineteenth-century concert hall at the Institute of Blind People in Milan, WonderGlass‘s master artisans embarked on a unique journey. Acclaimed international design studios nendo and Formafantasma  reinterpreted the time-honoured traditions of glassmaking.

CONTRASTO by WonderGlass @ Istituto dei Ciechi - Photo by WonderGlass.

nendo created a sequence of luminous globes embraced by bronzed fused glass sheets to recall the sun’s journey above the horizon at dusk. Formafantasma designed pendant lamps with a distinctive industrial style that bloomed with Murano glass flowers.

The CONTRASTO exhibition’s profound focus on the reciprocity of differences was a testament to the intricate and meticulous artistic process. It ‘sought out tension and intrigue: “between light and darkness, between the textural and the smooth, between the opaque and the transparent, and ultimately from the transfiguration of glass from molten to solid states,” as Wonderglass co-founder Christian Mussati told Archipanic.

CONTRASTO by WonderGlass @ Istituto dei Ciechi - Photo by WonderGlass.

CONTRASTO by WonderGlass @ Istituto dei Ciechi – Photo by WonderGlass.

Japanese design studio nendo presented Dusk, a collection of warm, bronzed fused glass sheets combined with blown glass illuminated orbs to approximate the tranquillity of dawn and dusk. The studio’s Founder, Oki Sato, arranged this series of lamps in a gradated procession, mimicking the day arc of the sun’s gradual ascent and descent.

CONTRASTO by WonderGlass feat. Dusk by nendo @ Istituto dei Ciechi - Photo by WonderGlass.

Graft is a pendant light collection by the Italian design studio Formafantasma, which approached blown and cast glassmaking traditions. By balancing and interrogating the industrial and organic, the domestic and the architectural, the rational and emotional, Graft’s stern geometries find a surprising counterpoint in the delicate handcrafted Murano glass flowers springing to life all across the steel and cast glass suspension.

CONTRASTO by WonderGlass feat. Graft by Formafantasma @ Istituto dei Ciechi - Photo by WonderGlass.

From nuanced tonal shifts to bold contrasts, glass revealed its duality with a tangible and tactile form at the CONTRASTO exhibition. “Forever shifting between liquid origins and solid forms, glass materially captures the dialectical spirit of opposition, impersonating perhaps the most human contrast of all: fragility embodying strength.”

CONTRASTO by WonderGlass feat. Dusk by nendo @ Istituto dei Ciechi - Photo by WonderGlass.

All photos are courtesy of WonderGlass.

CONTRASTO by WonderGlass feat. Graft by Formafantasma @ Istituto dei Ciechi - Photo by WonderGlass.