Last Updated: Aug 24, 2018     Views: 145

The modern glass industry on the island of Murano was restarted by Antonio Salviati (1816-1890) in the 1850s after the devastation to the glass manufacturing industry, first under Napoleon, and then the Austrians, in the first half of the 19th century.  Following the unification of Italy in 1861 and the Austrians handing over control of Venice to Italy in the fall of 1866, Salviati started his glass manufacturing enterprise, initially called Salviati & C in 1866.  According to Judy Rudoe (2002), “Salviati initially became fascinated with mosaics and got to know the few glassmakers in Venice still able to make glass tesserae… Salviati set up a mosaic workshop in 1859 (308).”  His company was financed with the help of British investors and would eventually merge with Pauly & C following the purchase of both companies by the Milano firm Societa Anonima Sanitria in 1919. 

As far as any connection to the Vatican Mosaic Studio and Salviati, he was “aware that mosaics were still being produced in Rome, Salviati did travel south to visit the Fabrica Vaticana dei Mosaica (Barr, 9), though no date is given for this trip.  On the attached bibliography there is a work by Henriette Perl, available online at Google books, please follow the link; that gives an excellent account of the history of micro mosaic work in Venice and mentions the Roman, Enrico Podio, who Salviati brought to Venice to help in his endeavor.  There is no mention of Podio having been trained at the Vatican Mosaic Studio. 

The micro mosaic, With View of the Basilica of San Marco, is one of the largest micro mosaics ever produced and was created by the artist E. Cerato.  Unfortunately, there is no biographical information available about the artist in our archives or collection.  In fact, the company website,, does not mention the artist or the work in question.  A further review of other artist working for the company fails to indicate a relationship with the Vatican Mosaic Studio.  Therefor any connection between Pauly & C and the Vatican Mosaic Studio would be tenuous at best.

Works cited

  • Barr, Sheldon.  (2008) Venetian glass Mosaics: 1860-1917.  Woodbridge: Antique Collectors' Club.
  • Rudoe, Judy.  (2002) “Reproductions of the Christian Glass of the Catacombs”:  James Jackson Jarves and the Revival of the Art of Glass in Venice.  Metropolitan Museum Journal, 37(2002), 305-314.



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