In the summer of 1988, Chihuly embarked on a series inspired by Art Deco Venetian glass. Working with the Italian glass master Lino Tagliapietra, Chihuly initially sought to replicate Venetian glass of the 1920s; however, this soon evolved into a new body of work. Chihuly combined historical traditions of glassmaking and decorative arts with contemporary techniques and unconventional forms. For the first time, Chihuly used additive elements to embellish his blown glass works. Consistently pushing the boundaries of scale, ornamentation, and technical complexity, each Venetian has a character of its own, with flamboyant attachments, sometimes humorous, and often organic.
Through continued experimentations with scale, Chihuly developed what he calls Piccolo Venetians, smaller, more delicate, iterations of the Venetians.