Luxury Design, Past & Present
This vase excels with its reduced and elegant form: like the stem of a flower protruding from its bulb, the narrow neck of the vase grows upwards and is crowned by the handle-shaped curved muzzle.
Robert Holubetz, one of Koloman Moser's most talented pupils at the Vienna School of Arts and Crafts, designed this vase on behalf of the Viennese glass publisher E. Bakalowits Sohne in 1900. The particularly harmonic vessel was manufactured by Loetz in different sizes and with various decorations.
Our example bears the so-called "world exhibition decor" (Phenomen Genre 358), created by Franz Hofstötter. This decor is characterised by a strongly naturalistic design. Its dark brown base can be understood as an allegory of the ground or earth, the middle part, carefully spun with bluish and silver-yellow threads, can be seen as atmosphere or air, while the orange-red top represents a sunset or fire, all three elements that need to be harnessed when creating an iridescent art glass vase.
The technical challenges in creating this decoration were considerable. What is even more fascinating here is the harmoniously shaped vessel and the delicate design on it with its astonishingly iridescent colour gradients.
The vase can be regarded as one of Robert Holubetz's most successful form designs and it is no coincidence, that this vase in its different decors can be found in almost every literature on Loetz glass.
Bib.: E. Ploil, H. Ricke e.a. (ed.),“Loetz – Böhmisches Glas 1880-1940, Werkmonographie“, vol. I, Prestel Verlag, Munich 1989, p. 187.
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