Californian artist Loren Stump is a master of the ancient Italian glass art of murrine. The age-old technique involves fusing canes of glass together and slicing through them to reveal intricately patterned sections. It’s a lot like slicing through a Swiss cake roll or a loaf of bread to reveal a beautiful cross-section filled with mind-boggling classical imagery such as Da Vinci’s Virgin on the Rocks.
To create a murrine, Stump works backwards – he starts with a two-dimensional image. He then layers different colors of molten glass around a core, heating and stretching it into a rod. When cooled, the rod can be sliced into the desired thickness, with each slice possessing the same pattern in the cross-section. Murrine was first practiced over 4,000 years ago in the Mideast, and later revived by Venetian glassmakers in the early 16th century.