Emilio Santini was born in Murano, Italy, into a family with 600 years of glassblowing tradition. He currently resides in Williamsburg, VA. He has recently begun to combine his flameworking talent with furnace blown and cast work. He has taught extensively in this country’s major glass schools and is a popular instructor for both beginning and highly skilled students.
What has your involvement been with The Studio over the years? I was very fortunate to be invited to teach at The Studio when it first opened its doors twenty years ago, and I have returned to teach every year since, both in the summer and winter. It was a pleasure and an honor to witness firsthand the infant Studio growing, first timidly then exponentially, under the wise management and care of Amy Schwartz and Bill Gudenrath. While creating a homey environment for teachers and students, they directed us—together with them—to be part of an institution where technique reigns first, in the service of art.
What do you like about working at The Studio? What I have valued most during my years at the Studio are the extraordinary opportunities to learn from other teachers and students, all the while having available the Museum’s limitless resources on ancient glass, art glass and the history of glass, from the Museum displays and curators, the Library and its librarians, and that inexhaustible font of answers and information who is glass Master and scholar, Bill Gudenrath.
As The Studio celebrates its 20th birthday, what would you say about its effect on the glass community? No other facility had, has, and will have larger influence in the world of glass than The Studio at Corning. Bill and Amy, supported by a staff always at the ready under the direction of Harry Seaman, have created a beacon for the entire glass world, introducing the study, practice, and discovery of techniques used in the creation of the Museum’s pieces and reintroducing the old practice of hosting skillful masters and their pupils on Museum grounds. Envied the world over, The Studio has been imitated by others but will never be equaled, let alone surpassed, in part because it rests on solid foundations, cemented by the spirit of David Whitehouse who welcomed Amy and Bill to Corning and entrusted the creation of The Studio to them.
May 2016 marks the 20th anniversary of the opening of The Studio of The Corning Museum of Glass, one of the foremost teaching schools for glass in the world. To celebrate, we are featuring 20 artists in the 20 weeks leading up to the birthday. These artists have studied, taught, and created at The Studio. Each Saturday, we’ll share words and work from the artists who have formed a connection with our Studio and our staff.