A thousand glass flowers Marietta Barovier and the invention of the rosetta bead

Evan Turk

Book - 2020

"Marietta and her family lived on the island of Murano, near Venice, as all glassmakers did in the early Renaissance. Her father, Angelo Barovier, was a true master of glass. Marietta longed to create gorgeous glass too, but glass was men's work. One day her father showed her how to shape the scalding-hot material into a work of art, and Marietta was mesmerized. Her skills grew and grew. Marietta worked until she created her own unique glass bead: the rosetta. Small but precious, the b...eautiful beads grew popular around the world and became as valuable as gold. The young girl who was once told she could not create art was now the woman who would leave her mark on glasswork for centuries to come." -- Amazon.com

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Subjects
Genres
Biographies
Picture books
Published
New York City : Atheneum Books for Young Readers [2020]
Edition
First edition
Language
English
Physical Description
1 volume (unpaged) : color illustrations ; 29 cm
Audience
Ages 4-8.
Grades K-1.
ISBN
9781534410343
1534410341
Main Author
Evan Turk (author)
Review by Booklist Reviews

*Starred Review* This beautifully illustrated picture book tells the story of millefiori, Italian thousand flower beads, through the imagined life of Marietta, daughter of real-life Renaissance glass master Angelo Barovier. The fictionalized text describes how young Marietta was trained in her father's Venetian glass workshop, eventually rediscovering the lost art of creating the iconic beads with glowing colors inside. Vibrant illustrations featuring deep, rich hues complement the descriptive text, whether it's comparing the sun to a glowing ball of glass or describing the shimmering tesserae mosaics of San Marco. The watercolor, colored pencil, oil pastel, and gold gouache illustrations also deftly capture Marietta's grit and determination as she stands up to her brothers, overcomes discrimination, and is eventually granted permission by the doge to become one of the first women glassmakers to open her own shop, sending her beads across Europe and Africa and even to the New World. An author's note provides additional information about the history of millefiori and identifies the artworks and artists who inspired the book's illustrations. Audiences are sure to enjoy this unique offering, whether used to support STEAM and art projects, lessons about history and trade, girl power, inventors, or the sheer joy of creativity.WOMEN IN FOCUS: The 19th in the 20th Grades K-3. Copyright 2020 Booklist Reviews.

Review by Publishers Weekly Reviews

Byzantine masterworks and period costumes give a sense of luxury to this picture biography by Turk (You Are Home) about Venice's first female glassblower, Marietta Barovier. Marietta's father, "a master of glass," has a workshop on the island of Murano; "Marietta dreamed of creating glass too, but glass was men's work." She begs to learn to blow glass, her wide face dominated by huge, wondering eyes, and her father shows her how in front of a blazing furnace. Later, he takes her by gondola to Venice, where they view a precious glass bowl made using a lost, Roman-era technology, and she sees the mosaics of San Marco: "Marietta gaped at the twinkling golden scenes, shimmering with millions of individual pieces." As an adult running her father's glassworks with her brothers, she rediscovers the lost technique, making delicate, colorful beads treasured as currency across "the Renaissance world." A triumphant tale of a girl who defeats tradition, it's also a visual homage to Venice, which Turk renders with vigorous pastel strokes in glorious hues. An author's note offers contextualizing information. Ages 4–8. Agent: Brenda Bowen, the Book Group. (Aug.) Copyright 2020 Publishers Weekly.

Review by School Library Journal Reviews

Gr 3–7—Rosetta beads can be used to create beautiful pieces of jewelry, but how did they come to be? In this illustrated biography, author/illustrator Turk depicts the life of a lesser-known Venetian innovator. Marietta Barovier was inspired by her father Angelo, a master of glassmaking, to engage in this art form. Historians speculate that she was born in the 15th century; Turk notes that the first documented mention of her was in 1431, in her mother's will. When Angelo died, Barovier's siblings inherited his glassworks. Angelo left his daughter the recipes for colored glass, which motivated Barovier to create her own works. However, the process was not an easy one. At the time, the idea of a woman glassmaker was not only laughable but also culturally unorthodox. While little is known about Barovier's life, this story attempts to fill in the gaps. Turk illuminates her ambition and creativity. Inspired by Renaissance artists, his breathtaking illustrations evoke the stunning art of glassmaking. The narrative flows well, providing context to Barovier's fascination with glassmaking and highlights the difficulties she faced. The author's note describes Turk's researching and writing. He explains that because little is actually known through historical records, some of Barovier's story is based on speculation. VERDICT Turk provides brilliant illustrations in this work about a lesser-known artist who made a tremendous impact. A welcome addition to elementary and middle school nonfiction picture book collections.—Molly Dettmann, Norman North H.S., OK Copyright 2020 School Library Journal.

Review by Publisher Summary 1

As a child in fifteenth-century Murano, Italy, Marietta Barovier is drawn to her father's workshop and, although glass blowing is men's work, she later revives the lost art of millefiori.

Review by Publisher Summary 2

A lavishly illustrated picture-book tribute to the life and achievements of groundbreaking Renaissance artisan Marietta Barovier describes how she defied convention to learn, and then transform, the art of Venetian glassmaking. By the award-winning creator of The Storyteller. 30,000 first printing. Simultaneous eBook. Illustrations.

Review by Publisher Summary 3

This gorgeous and empowering picture book from award-winning author-illustrator Evan Turk paints the portrait of Marietta Barovier, the groundbreaking Renaissance artisan who helped shape the future of Venetian glassmaking. Marietta and her family lived on the island of Murano, near Venice, as all glassmakers did in the early Renaissance. Her father, Angelo Barovier, was a true maestro, a master of glass. Marietta longed to create gorgeous glass too, but glass was men’s work.One day her father showed her how to shape the scalding-hot material into a work of art, and Marietta was mesmerized. Her skills grew and grew.Marietta worked until she created her own unique glass bead: the rosetta. Small but precious, the beautiful beads grew popular around the world and became as valuable as gold. The young girl who was once told she could not create art was now the woman who would leave her mark on glasswork for centuries to come.

Review by Publisher Summary 4

This gorgeous and empowering picture book from award-winning author-illustrator Evan Turk paints the portrait of Marietta Barovier, the groundbreaking Renaissance artisan who helped shape the future of Venetian glassmaking. Marietta and her family lived on the island of Murano, near Venice, as all glassmakers did in the early Renaissance. Her father, Angelo Barovier, was a true maestro, a master of glass. Marietta longed to create gorgeous glass too, but glass was men's work.One day her father showed her how to shape the scalding-hot material into a work of art, and Marietta was mesmerized. Her skills grew and grew.Marietta worked until she created her own unique glass bead: the rosetta. Small but precious, the beautiful beads grew popular around the world and became as valuable as gold. The young girl who was once told she could not create art was now the woman who would leave her mark on glasswork for centuries to come.