Novaro, Jean-Claude - Biography

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Jean-Claude Novaro was born in Antibes on 18 October 1943 and died in Monaco on 30 December 2014.

He is considered one of the greatest contemporary glassmaker. The auctioneers and art critics compare him to Daum, Lalique, Marinot or Gallé.

Cadet of four children, he is born in the south of France, grows in a small village, place of the Arcades, in Biot. At the age of 14, he lost his mother and left the school "delighted to have learned nothing", to integrate the current Verrerie de Biot near Antibes under the protective wing of its founder Éloi Monod , whom the young Novaro considered already as his spiritual father. Apprentice in 1957 at the age of 20, Jean-Claude Novaro became master glassmaker and "chief of the hall" and was in charge of the training from 1973 to 1977. During this period, he was to create and produce all models of glassware, together with a team of 40 glassworkers under his direction.

In 1977, he created his own studio, still in Biot. There he works with both marble and tool, in hot applications, in metallization by reduction, and with additions of metals, metal oxides, gold leaves and various precious metals. Jean-Claude Novaro has constantly rejected the limits of his art. Never under the influence of his fame, he invented and reinvented his own techniques of colorations, shapes and sizes. He invented a technique in 1991 consisting of including enamel powders between layers in the thickness of the glass, thus bringing to his pieces unique reflections. Known for his relentless research, self-taught artist, he wanted to work with his own hands every piece coming out of his studio.

Sharing the love of glass, he collaborated with another artist from Biot, Jean-Paul Van Lith from 1979 to 1981.

Janine Bloch-Dermant will say in her book, The Glass of the 80s: "Jean-Claude Novaro has inexhaustible creative possibilities, which nothing disgusts, neither the weight and the importance of the pieces, nor the most elaborate and complex. He knows how to complicate and apply all the techniques, to combine them in feats which he alone can lead. "

In 2002, he created a monumental work for the airport of Nice. He will also enter the Guinness Book of Records for making the largest glass work ever made by a master glassmaker. He also produced great works for the Grand Prix of the international music press.

In 2011, Amédée Santalo, a French designer, opened with him a workshop in the United Arab Emirates in the presence of Sheikh Al Qassimi, ruler of Ras Al Khaimah and president of RAK Ceramics.

His works are always exhibited in the best restaurants such as Michelangelo in Antibes, Alain Ducasse in New York, Jacques Maximin in Bruno de Lorgues or the restaurant of Bacon in Cap d'Antibes. The artist will have performed more than 120 demonstrations of his work worldwide, including Germany, Belgium, Switzerland, Japan and the United States, where he will be known as "The King of Glass".

Among his purchasers are celebrities such as Prince Albert II of Monaco, Khalid Al Qassimi, Robert De Niro, Frank Sinatra, Bill Cosby, Mike Tyson, Jean Reno, Johnny Hallyday,  Nathalie Baye, Alain Ducasse ...