Born near Venice in 1931, Walter Furlan took apprenticeship with world renowned Mamaracio Gino Forte and Flavio Poli at their glassworks where he was taught to sculpt glass 'a massello', a technique which infuses colour into pure crystal thereby giving the glass sculpture bright and vivid colour. He soon established himself as a master craftsman and started to develop a capacity and versatility for interpreting artistic design in his sculptures. He gained recognition as a master designer and became influenced by a number of artists, amongst them Pablo Picasso who he met with on several occasions.
Furlan was given permission by Picasso himself to interpret his paintings during his Cubic Period thereby giving them a third dimension within his glass sculptures. He was also given license to carry on using his name after Picasso's death in 1973.