The “Bolle” bottles designed by Finnish designer Tapio Wirkkala in 1968 for Venini are presenting the artistic “Incalmo” technique.
The incalmo technique of making glass began in the sixteenth century when Italian glass makers wanted to achieve the look of two or three different colored sections of glass to make it appear as if it was one piece of glass. Venice was the center for this method of glass making and soon spread across Europe and eventually America, where highly skilled glass makers make this beautiful glassware.
Each piece of glass that is to be made into one is blown separately and must be the same width at the base or top where it is to be fused to another piece of glass. This second piece must be placed directly at the edge of the first piece and fit perfectly so there is no overlap with the edges. The finished piece is two or three bands of color in a vase or bowl, sometimes with an added decoration, but usually left plain. The final glassware can be for practical or decorative use.
Tapio Wirkkala became world famous as a glass and wood designer, taking his inspiration from the raw Finnish nature and landscape. For Wirkkala, no material was alien and he left no area of design unexplored. He worked in metals such as silver and copper, but also in porcelain and plastics. Tapio Wirkkalas design from the 1950’s reflects natures own forms such as leaves, mushrooms and melting ice. These forms with pure and elegant contours are easily recognized in the laminated birch dishes made in a technique called aeroplane veneer. This for Wirkkala so typical plywood was also used for larger sculptures. One of his plywood pieces was voted as the most beautiful object of the year in 1954. His artwork and unique objects are to be found in the worlds leading museums.