Stevan and Mila Stanisic (Apperlo) Master Artisans and founders of Apperlo Art relocated to Southwest Florida from Eastern Europe. Stevan is a fourth generation artist whose family began creating works of art in glass since 1908, specializing in fabrication and restoration services for stained glass windows and mosaics. Their work enlivens and adorns public and private buildings around the world.
With over 100 years of family experience creating glass masterworks behind him, Stevan remains just as passionate as his great-grandparents about the art.
Mila and Stevan joined Centers for the Arts / Bonita Springs as a stained glass and mosaic instructors. Through classes they hope to pass their treasure trove of knowledge and skill on to willing students.
They are looking forward to discussing projects of any size for stained glass, mosaics, abstract paintings, web design and custom framing.
Five generations of stained glass tradition
Founded in 1908, in Sombor, Stained glass Studio Stanisic was one of the few art glass studios in the Austro - Hungarian Empire, nearest ones being located in Vienna and Budapest.
After the World War One (in 1918) Austro-Hungarian Empire was effectively dissolved and with the independence of the West Slavs and South Slavs, city of Sombor became a part of Kingdom of Serbs, Croats and Slovenes. In 1929 the official name of the state was changed to "Kingdom of Yugoslavia" by King Alexander I. This was the most prosperous period for the Stanisic Studio. The Studio had 55 full time employees working on many significant projects across the Southeast Europe.
1930's - Stanisic studio took part at the International exhibitions in Greece and Turkey. In 1931, at the World Fair in Milan, Italy the studio was awarded for portraits painted on glass of the Italian Royal Family, prime minister Mussolini and the Pope.
1940's - At the end of World War Two (in 1945) the Monarchy was abolished and a communist government was established. Yugoslavia was devastated by the war and soon after the government built factories and grandiose buildings, for social purposes.
During those years, the Stanisic Studio presented stained glass in the style of social-realism. One of the first projects was stained glass depicting the reconstruction of the country and the army for the Executive Council of the Federal People’s Republic of Yugoslavia. The following projects symbolized the luxury, wealth and happiness which some believed communism would bring. That euphoria lasted until the mid-’60s.
1960's - Milan Stanisic II went to Germany to receive training with the Mayer-Cetler and Gerling Studios. He took over the business from his father Stevan Stanisic I, later this year. The time of Communist enthusiasm passed, and a period of more modest building projects began. It was then when many long-neglected buildings began to be restored.
1970's - The next period of stained glass in Yugoslavia became known as post social realism, when glass was being created for museums commemorating the Revolution. In the meantime, the role of religion was increasing, and demand for religious stained glass windows was in demand. Yugoslavian society longed for a return to the basic values of human life; people wanted to save what had been so unjustly neglected for four decades. Stained glass restoration became a major part of the Stanisic studio business.
1980's - Milan Stanisic II won the Silver Medal of the University of Arts in Belgrade and was promoted to Director of the Stained glass Division within the Academy of Applied Arts. The major project of that time was the restoration of the Synagogue in Novi Sad. The Synagogue in Novi Sad is the largest sacral building in Yugoslavia. In a period of one year, the Stanisic's restored about 3,200 square feet of stained glass including two large rose windows and a 40-foot diameter stained glass dome. Milan Stanisic II participated in many significant exhibitions related to art glass; Singapore, Japan, USA, etc.
In addition to making sacral stained glass windows, the Stanisic Studio followed the development of modern architecture, incorporating the experience of old techniques in the modern style.
1989 - Stevan Stanisic II went to the United States to improve his artistic skills. In a period of one year he took apprenticeship with two major stained glass studios in New York City, Greenland and Rohlf’s.
1990's - During the civil war in former Yugoslavia, Milan Stanisic II moved the Stanisic Studio to Budapest, Hungary. In 1993, Stevan Stanisic II immigrated to United States and continued his career at Blenko Glass Company. Two years later he founded stained glass studio "Glass Art Stanisic" in Huntington, West Virginia. In 1997, Stevan Stanisic II started a succesfull business relationship with stained glass designer Brenda Belfield. He relocated the Studio to Washington D.C. and started a new company VitrauxArt.
2001 - Stevan Stanisic II moved fabricating studio abroad, back to a family owned studio in Serbia. While he continued his presence in United States most of the project made for US clients were fabricated oversees.
2016 - Stevan Stanisic II and his wife Mila returned to USA and established a new branch of family business Apperlo Art in Naples, Florida.