Elle Décor (USA)
FOUNDERS Francesco and Mario Ballarin
HISTORY Brothers Francesco, 90, and Mario, 80, still actively participate in the business, working alongside their offspring to oversee new designs. Since 1997, Mario’s son Angelo has run the company; his children Lisa and Cristian have now joined him.
Old-world respect meets experimentation. The company continues to push the boundaries of Murano glass, for example, by manipulating borosilicate (Pyrex) to create contemporary forms while employing historical Venetian glassblowing techniques, such as molatura (grinding), engraving, and gold leaf.
NEWS Even during the beginning of the pandemic, Ballarin kept the furnaces running to produce glassware for online orders. The forthcoming Avventura line of vases, lamps, glasses, and bottles, launching in July, will fuse two methods: murrinas, or millefiori, small cylindrical glass rods that are melted, cut, and arranged into floral compositions; and the Canne technique of glass rods melted and blown together.