©CRT Côte d’Azur France – Yann Savalle blysart

Antoine Pierini: sculpture on glass as a heritage!

Antoine Pierini quite naturally inherited the art of glass working, passed on to him from his father, Robert Pierini. In the family studio in Biot, which he has transformed into the Pierini Glass Art Centre, this master glassmaker shares his passion every day…


At the Pierinis, glass art is a family affair…

“Absolutely, it was my father who bought the current Pierini Glass Art Centre 40 years ago. It was an old oil mill! He started working on glass for table arts, and then turned to creating decorative objets d’art, and then to sculpture. I helped in this evolution, and what’s more, he passed all his expertise on to me right from a young age. Unlike my father, I was drawn to sculpture from the very beginning.  In 2005, I took over the family business. And four years ago, I wanted to have the studio develop into the Pierini Glass Art Centre.”

Why did you create the Pierini Glass Art Centre?

“I wanted to promote both the art of glassmaking and the creators. The Pierini Glass Art Centre comprises a studio, a gallery, and a residential centre. Thanks to a partnership with various schools across the globe, especially in the United States, we host and play a role in training young emerging artists. We also host residencies for major names in contemporary glass, representational sculptors, and others who are more design- or organic-focussed, all of whom come to share this same passion for this fusion material. At the end of these residencies, the works are exhibited, and a catalogue published.”

Finally, the art of glassmaking is being learned through sharing…

“Working with glass is teamwork that requires different stages and at least four people. Consequently, the young people on the residential course take part in creating a work and they learn a lot. I believe that you can’t put a price on sharing a passion. My father passed his expertise onto me, and I want to do the same with the younger generations.  I’m also continuing to learn different techniques from other artists, thanks to this sharing, without which glass art could not continue.”