Thursday March 8, 2018 | by Valerie Hughes

DESIGN: Exhibited at prestigious Munich lighting showroom, Simone Crestani's sculpted flameworked creations honor nature

Italian artist Simone Crestani spent 10 years as an apprentice to Massimo Lunardon before striking out on his own, employing the techniques he learned to sculpt at the torch. Crestani enjoys working inside the blown glass forms he flameworks to create complex and large-scale forms inspired by his wonder at the natural world, and humanity’s impact on it. Crestani's design pieces encapsulate both powerful and ephemeral qualities of nature. During the Munich Creative Business Week, an important design event in Germany, Simone Crestani is having a solo exhibition through April 24th taking place at the Ingo Maurer showroom in Munich at Kaiserstrasse 47.

Crestani’s exhibit is titled "Krystalline Wunderkammer," a well-worn reference to the historic cabinets that filled with fantastical oddities and called “cabinets of wonder.” In his exhibit, Crestani’s works hold the same magical and wondrous qualities. Crestani makes a universe of glass featuring spindly bonsai trees and eerie fish skeletons.

In the collection of pieces entitled Hommage A Acteon, Crestani depicts the head of a stag with intimidating antlers. This piece was inspired by Greek Mythology and the story of Actaeon. Actaeon was a well-known hunter and incited the wrath of Artemis, the Greek Goddess of hunting and the natural environment. There are many different version of the myth but they all end the same way: Artemis transformed Actaeon into a stag and the latter stared at his reflection in a pond, shocked. Mistakenly, he called his hunting dogs, who subsequently devoured him, seeing not a man but a deer. The story blurs the line between man and animal, as does Crestani’s stunning work, which recalls human emotion.

Crestani’s Trophy Bottles contain undertones of his previous work with Camila Brunelli, Metamorphosis. Whereas Metamorphosis uses insects as inspiration to sculpt bottles, Trophy Bottles is a collection of bottles with caps that reproduce images of wild animals’ horns. The horns are meant to be a symbol of the inhabitants of unspoiled nature.

There is also a collection of pieces entitled Modern Trophy. One of the glass pieces is a plucked hen, its feet bound, that hangs upside down. The hen symbolizes man’s obsession with capturing nature and the contrasting act of killing it. The beauty of nature is lost once the animal is killed, resulting in today’s “modern trophy.”

"Krystalline Wunderkammer" encapsulates the wonders of nature and its relation to humanity. With his attention to detail and delicate glasswork, Crestani is able to make a collection that evokes thoughts about society’s relationship to the environment.


Simone Crestani
“Krystalline Wunderkammer”
Through April 24, 2018
Ingo Maurer GmbH
Kaiserstrasse 47
80801 München
Tel: +49.89.381.6060

GLASS: The UrbanGlass Quarterly, a glossy art magazine published four times a year by UrbanGlass has provided a critical context to the most important artwork being done in the medium of glass for 35 years.