Monday, September 30, 2013

Vanity Fair

A complete set of Barbini's circus themed glass accessories for the discerning woman's vanity, circa 1950.

Sunday, September 29, 2013

Prized Possession

A wonderful label is worth a thousand words. This sommerso bottle in the style of Flavio Poli has a distinct history as the silver foil states: Muranese "Grand Prize Genuine Venetian Glass World Fair Brussels 1958"!
14 1/4 "

Saturday, September 28, 2013

Spectacular Sculpture

Manuel Rodulfo Tardo (1914-1998) is a much awarded Cuban artist of note. His works can be found in public spaces and housed in major museums and educational institutions. While the biggest collection of his works under one roof can be found at the Museo Nacional de Bellas Artes in Havana, Cuba, he spent that last 35 years of his life in New York City showing at galleries here. This sculpture carved out of a single piece of solid Rosewood is called "Tropic" and was completed in New York, signed 1972.
28" including stand

Friday, September 27, 2013

Really Good Gunnar

Gunnar Nylund for Rörstrand, Sweden, circa 1950. A typical shape in an atypical glaze, possibly unique, as we haven't seen it before. The overglaze is so drippy in appearance that it looks like molten caramel. The underglaze is a matte, almost teal color. The effect of the pattern reminds me of leopard spots. This may be a small piece at just 7", but it is a huge statement from the ceramics master.

Thursday, September 26, 2013

Shop One

A set of three bronze sculptural candle holders by John Prip (right) and Ronald Hayes Pearson,  manufactured in the 1950s by Metal Arts Co. of Rochester, New York. These were made expressly to be sold locally at the nation's first important craft store, "Shop One" part of the Rochester Institute of Technology. Their designs were then distributed more widely through Richards Morganthau - the founders of Raymor.

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Greece by Way of Germany

In Europe, at the turn of the last century, two main design movements seem to emerge simultaneously. Art Nouveau was influencing the Avant-garde and fashionable set, while the old guard pushed for a classical approach to architecture and design. The Beaux-Arts movement embraced a revivalism - no more classical that evidenced by this Greek-Style porcelain krater created in 1955 from the German porcelain factory Johann Seltmann, made in Vohenstrauss, Bavaria. Gold, chocolate brown, and burnt orange decorations depict figures of Greek philosophers, musicians and artists.
14" x 8.75" 

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Made in America

California Pottery is an important category of ceramics and a living legend of the craft is potter Tom McMillin. In 2006, the Beatrice Wood Center for the Arts selected Tom McMillin to be the first artist in residence. This opportunity allowed him to create work for an exhibition in Beatrice Wood's own studio (another legendary name in American ceramics) and the ability to use her glazes and kilns. The chartreuse piece above is from McMillin's own studio during the late 60s, closer to the time the photo below would have been taken.

Monday, September 23, 2013

GREY Gratitude

In this age of myriad glossies, few stand apart as superior publications. We are pleased to be included as an online presence ( )  for the internationally respected fashion tome called GREY. In conjunction with the release of their latest issue (they publish just twice annually) the publishers have included us in a feature about the shop. We are happy to live on the same site as all that is fabulous and fashionable according to their discerning editors.
Previous Issue Cover by: Ellen von Unwerth
Shop Photo: Giorgia Valli

Sunday, September 22, 2013

Tangerine Dream

An iconic colorway for art glass often referred to as Amberina, but dubbed 'Tangerine' at the Blenko factory in West Virgina, where these three bottles were created from a design by Wayne Husted sometime from 1962-1969. It's rare to have a collection of 3-of-a-kind of any particular shape, but great fun in this gradated style. Anyone else craving a Tequila Sunrise???

Saturday, September 21, 2013

Large and Lava

Iris Barna (1920-2007) was a German-born potter who made a name as a gallery worthy artist in the American Southwest. Based in Santa Fe, she was most prolific in the 50s -70s. She used only stoneware and other clays and materials that could be derived locally in New Mexico, yet the German influence is quite clear in her technique. Notice the touch of blue dripping lava-like from the top. This is a large scale work with a custom wrought iron base, likely commissioned by the artist as a way to elevate this work as fine art - both literally and as a way to give it reverence.
Vessel = 13.5" x 12" , 18" with stand

Friday, September 20, 2013

Nature's Gifts

Nothing is more beautiful than mother nature. These Mediterranean miracles were captured in Lucite sometime in 60s or 70s. The top is a Murex shell (Fun Fact: the snail inside was the only source of the color purple prior to modern dye manufacture - used by Romans in their royal clothing) and the bottom - a white coral from a time before we had a clue to its impending extinction.
6", 4.5"

Thursday, September 19, 2013

Great Glass from Great Britain

Whitefriars Glass situated on Fleet Street in London (est. 1680) was a storied factory from England, existed for centuries, and at one point was called James Powell and Sons. Early on, the company was best known for making the stain glass for churches. In the 19th century they were innovators in creating scientific applications for glass such as x-ray tubes and light bulbs. This piece dates from the 1960s when the company tried to compete with the popularity of Italian and Scandinavian glass by producing mass appeal decorative items for the home. This rare vase has a kind of bark texture. The color reminds me of a tall frothy glass of root beer.
12" x 7"

Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Love of Chains

In the last few years a cult following has emerged for the works of Viennese designer Carl Auböck (1900 -1957). 
A master of minimalist industrial design created in his Austrian home studio, a company kept vibrant currently by his sons. Pictured above are a coveted pair of original iconic chain link paperweights made sometime in the 50s - both brass and nickle plated shown here.
8" long

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Kindred Kindness

"The End of History is an unexpected spot in the West Village with a vast array of vintage glass and ceramics from the 1950s and '60s"
We continue our mutual admiration with the king of retro-chic housewares, Jonathan Adler. He is never shy with his accolades when pressed for a shopping tip. We often return the favor with our customers as they recognize the similar aesthetic appeal of our vintage wares to his contemporary interpretations of the classic mid-century look. This mention is from the October issue of Afar , an upscale travel magazine. Thanks again Jonathan - and right-back-atchya!

Monday, September 16, 2013

More Gilty Pleasures

A unique pairing of a style of Italian pottery in a category all their own from Elbee Pottery, Italy, 1950s. The crazing reveals a world of candy colored undercoating peaking through the cracks. Gilded, Crackled, and Tutti-fruity all at once.
Both just around 11"

Sunday, September 15, 2013

Gilty Pleasure

Neoclassicism via mid-century Italy.
Gold leaf over terracotta with a black high glossy glazed interior. 
9" in height

Saturday, September 14, 2013

One More Maestro-piece

Just in time for fall, an abstract foliage motif from the hand of our latest discovery - Vittorio Ferro for Fratelli Pagnin. The provenance is similar to the vase I posted just a few days ago in that it came directly from the private collection of the Pagnin family. This piece is distinctive with its generous layering of gunmetal, which gives it its impressive illumination. The colors are gorgeously saturated jewel tones. Another 80s stunner!

Friday, September 13, 2013

Seta Set

More is more when it comes to certain patterns. How lucky are we to find a trio of Aldo Londi's 'Seta' series. Made for Bitossi from 1957-1965. Seta is from the Italian word for silk - and this color palette and texture certainly reminds us of the lovely silks of Thailand and India. The interior glaze is a high gloss lavender. 
19", 8.5", 2"

Thursday, September 12, 2013

Rare Steer

Another Alvino Bagni creation we've happily discovered! Created in the 50s for Raymor in a brassy, almost rose-gold glaze. A fierce just-about-to-charge stance makes this piece a bold decorative symbol of financial success.
16" long x 9" high

Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Unique Larson

A name synonymous with Swedish ceramics is Lisa Larson. The still living artist is a national treasure and is best known for her iconic feline figurines. However, she also created other wares for the home such as this rare large vase seen above. Similar works can be seen in the portrait of the legend at work in her studio at Gustavsberg, shown here in the 1950s. Our vase seems an early prototype for a line that was eventually produced called "Granada". The incised pattern has a wonderfully freeform, almost tribal quality to the lines.
Quite a nice size at 14" tall and 12" wide

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Maestro's Masterpiece

The art world lost one of its glass Maestros last year when Vittorio Ferro passed away at 80 years of age. His resume was impressive with a nearly 3 decade tenure at Fratelli Toso where he earned his reputation as a master of the craft. This piece is a treasure from the 1980s when he worked for the factory Fratelli Pagnin - in fact, this piece comes from the Pagnin family's private collection. The technique employed here is referred to as Pezzato, from the Italian for "patchwork" - a complex process that incorporates the melding of vintage Murano murrines (rod segments) into a colorful new work. This is a serious collector's dream. 

Monday, September 9, 2013

Merboy Mystery

I'll be the first to admit that my knowledge of mythology may be somewhat limited, but the subject of this piece seems to be from legend. Son of Poseidon perhaps? Made by the great Dane Just Andersen in the 1940s, this fishy sculpture was created from a mixed metal ore of Andersen's own making (meant to replicate Bronze during rations) called "Disko" metal. Perhaps there's more to this "Big Fish" story than meets the eye.
10" x 10"

Sunday, September 8, 2013

Vanity Fair

A luxury set for the dresser or vanity from Hutschenreuther. 1960's Bavarian porcelain made uber-deluxe with genuine gold and the bluest cobalt...not to mention the Austrian cut crystal pulls. Of course, sold only as a set of three.
Heights range from 2.5"- 5.5"

Saturday, September 7, 2013

Studio Stunner

A severe departure from the playful, colorful graphic kitchenware most closely associated with Swedish ceramicist Marianne Westman. This is a "Unique" earthy studio ceramic from her atelier within Rörstrand, circa 1960s. It mixes  stoneware clay with taupe drips and a moss green crackle glass glaze. This pot perfectly represents the other side of the 60s aesthetic...less poppy and more hippie!

Friday, September 6, 2013

The Top

A mottled masterpiece of muted tones in a top-like shape by Carl-Harry Stålhane for Rörstrand, circa 1960.
9.5" x 8"

Thursday, September 5, 2013

Toft Tureen

Danish studio pottery of the rarest kind, from the hand of Thomas Toft, circa 1950s. His hyper-graphic wares are harder to come by, and we have never seen a covered bowl such as this.
7.5" x 11"

Wednesday, September 4, 2013

Windows to Our World

Fall into our latest window display. An autumnal array of glass and porcelain...with a mix of mid-century classics and a touch of Asian influence. It's a cornucopia of everything we are loving in every shade of the foliage to come.

Tuesday, September 3, 2013

Time After Time

This is what we like to refer to as Art Deco Deluxe. Bronze signs of the zodiac encircle a smoked glass face. This is a handsome timepiece from an elegant era gone by. We feel strongly that the 1920-30s definition of futurism makes perfect sense in the present.
Made by the Swiss firm of Jaeger Le-Coultre, maker of some of the world's most luxurious clocks and watches.
Just under 10" in diameter

Monday, September 2, 2013

Happy Labor Day!

We are, of course, closed on this final summer holiday...let's hope you too are by the pool - as opposed to in the typing pool.

Sunday, September 1, 2013

The Murano Triangle

Here's one you can get lost in! Probably one of the largest scale bowls to ever grace our store. Black Murano glass with a ocean's worth of copper dust swirled throughout.
21" at its greatest diameter

Note: We are closed Monday for the holiday