Venice is the centre of European glass art, so it goes without saying that Hungarian glass artists have had their eye on this city since the Renaissance. The famous crystal goblet of King Matthias was also made in this city, but the most beautiful works of art in the Renaissance humanist environment also originated from here. Relations between Hungary and Venice flourished in the Middle Ages. There were times when the territory of Dalmatia was part of the city-state and at other times it was part of Hungary. The Turkish wars, however, put an end to this. Centuries later Venice was an example to follow when it came to artistic glass, since it was the guarantee of quality at a time when new centres of artistic glass were also being established in our country, Hungary.
In the 17th century, the Transylvanian prince Gábor Bethlen invited Murano masters to Transylvania to establish high quality craftmanship in glass. The “Venetian style” was followed by the “Venetian fashion” of the crystal manufactories that were born in the Baroque period. A succession of Hungarian masters from Henrik Giergl to Zsófia Kanyák came here on pilgrimage to learn the art of Venetian glassmaking. The works of art on display here show the high standard to which Hungarian professional glassmakers still adhere today to rival their counterparts in the Murano glass factories.