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Classification: Glass

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Quezal Art Glass and Decorating Company (aka Quezal Art Glass and Decorating Company)
American, 1902–1925
Gorham (aka Gorham Manufacturing Company)
American, born 1831

Vase

about 1903

Object Type: Glass
Creation Place: North America, American, New York
Dimensions:
11 1/2 in. (29.21 cm)
Medium and Support: Free-blown glass and silver
Accession Number: 1985.0015.0006

Credit Line: Gift of Dr. and Mrs. Jackson L. Bostwick

Currently On View


This vase is an example of free-blown glass mounted in sterling silver. The vase itself was created at Quezal, and inserted into a silver mount created by the Gorham Manufacturing Company (which is better known as a manufacturer of silver flatware.) The work was made by hand, by a very skilled craftsperson. As most of the Quezal’s craftsmen were originally employees of Tiffany Studios, it is likely that the person who designed and created this work based it on Tiffany’s popular aesthetic.

Its design is highly representative of the art movement known in Europe as Art Nouveau. The thin vertical lines on the surface ending in the rounded pillow-like forms were probably intended to evoke the stylized form of peacock feathers; the blue green iridescent color of the vase reflects the colors of the bird as well. The sinuous, curving floral shapes at the top are also stylized and may represent tulips, but more likely the lotus blossom, which was a common motif in Art Nouveau design. The iridescent luster of the vase’s surface is an effect that was also created and popularized by Tiffany, and known in their factories as Favrile. It was produced by brushing metal oxides on the surface of the glass while it was still hot.

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