Ongaro e Fuga was established in 1954 by Franco Fuga and his wife Tullia Ongaro, but our art dates back centuries, and today we are able to perpetuate the magic and wonder of Venetian mirrors.
Just like our name comes from the encounter between the pride of the Hungarian mountains and the freshness of the waters and the colours of Murano, our mirrors combine the solidity of the finest materials and craftsmanship precision with the lightness of art.
Murano is glass and the artisan Angelo Fuga was born actually on this island, as was written in 1874 by the abbot Vincenzo Zanetti in his "Angelo Fuga, his mirrors and his laboratory in Murano", glass he loved, worked and rendered famous.
In 1852 our artist began to dedicate himself to engraving glass in the workshop of his uncle Giuseppe Buffi, then to buy a small laboratory in Venice at the bridge of San Felice where he received his first small commissions, such as engravings of masks and figures for Venetian antique dealers. Angelo Fuga began his journey exactly in that small dark room where he brought together with his lathe and his tools also his dreams.
He did not possess financial capital and he did not benefit from sponsors. Even without this help he lived simply and provided the necessities thanks to excellent studies, his notable obstinance and strong will.
In 1862 the director of the Museo Civico Artistico Industriale of Murano, evaluator of works by young artists, commissioned him to make an engraved mirror of the size 2.5 metres high and1.70 metres wide. Such a grand work finally allowed him to satisfy his real genius and it was recognized as one of the most majestic engraved mirrors of all times.
Thanks to the continuous work in design and the passion which animated him, he succeeded to refine and modify the baroque style used by artists of the time, creating a new Renaissance style. He was no longer a youngster, but a master of one of the most strenuous and complex crafts of all times.
Here opened before the young Angelo Fuga, a world rich in consequences. He was invited to participate in the most important exhibitions in the world, for example, in 1867 in Paris, the glass exhibition in Murano of 1869 where the jury described his work with these words, " Above the others as an eagle flies is Angelo Fuga.
He has arrived at a destination unexpected thanks to his good taste, his skills in design and his aesthetic awareness."
In 1870 he participated in the Exposition in London, in 1871 and in 1872 he participated in those of Milan and Lione, and 1873 in Vienna. In the following years he was requested in Germany, Switzerland, Paris and again in London.
Seeing as how everyone who found themselves in front of his mirrors were enraptured, numerous were the awards received and even more the commissions coming from around the world which arrived in his laboratory.
The mirrors of Angelo Fuga travelled around the world as have the mirrors of Ongaro and Fuga since 1948. This ancient story and the deep roots is the story of the man that began the fascinating art of the mirror that we know today. This story speaks of us.
The creative flair of Giuliano, the founders' son, keeps past techniques, materials and processing methods alive, while concurrently creating a bridge towards the future, thanks to partnerships with international artists and designers. We work in Murano because here, there is no need to sit down and think to design a new mirror: because here, every cloud and every coloured façade reflected on the waters of the lagoon is the living material which inspires our creations.
For us, creating is not only the manual crafting of Venetian-style mirrors, but it is also the designing of site-specific installations, teaming up with artists, designers and architects, restoring and reproducing antique mirrors, a famous example of which is the restoration of the mirrors at La Fenice theatre in the 1960s.
For us, skill derives not only from "know-how", but also from the "ability to imagine". For this reason, we put our workmanship and the force of tradition at the disposal of the creative flair of artists and designers.
Ongaro e Fuga is part of the Murano Promovetro Consortium - a major consortium that counts among its members Confartigianato Venezia and Confindustria Venezia - that for over twenty years has been involved in valuing the image of artistic glass, in order to preserve, protect and defend the thousand year-old art of Murano glass-blowing, and promote, develop, value and handle proper world-wide marketing of this significant cultural heritage.
Ongaro e Fuga is proud to be the only certified Promovetro member company to produce mirrors on Murano island.