Loetz: 1900 Paris Exposition (Part 2)

The hard work of Spaun and all his collaborators ended in great success. Critics and the press praised his glass vases to the highest degree. The Grand Prix of the World Exhibition was a prize that had previously only been awarded to greats such as Gallé or Tiffany. Hofstötter and Prochaska were also honored for their work. In addition to all the successes, the 1900 Paris Exposition naturally also brought great economic success for the Loetz company.

Another vase with which Loetz made a breakthrough at the World’s Fair was the decor Phenomenon Genre 384. This vase was not known when the new book by Ernst Ploil and Toby Sharp was published. (Lötz 1900, by Ernst Ploil and Toby Sharp, in Kinsky editionen) Before that, only the pattern cut was known. When it did appear, its dimensions corresponded exactly to the scale on said pattern cut. It was also probably a Loetz decoration. Compared to other Loetz vases, this one is quite large and crafted in a floral and Art Nouveau-like shape. Due to the elaborate craftsmanship and especially the artistic iridescence, this work became an exceptional object.

Decor Phenomenon Genre 384

The decoration consists of a multitude of layers of green, brown, white, and blue threads, which were spun onto the still unblown value piece, which was then artfully warped. This unique blend results in the golden shimmer of the vase, a flowing pattern that transitions from light green to golden yellow and light brown tones. In addition, darker streams run across the surface of the decoration. These create a playful rhythm that gives the vase a special beauty.

Middle-part of the vase in detail. Layers of green, white, brown and blue threads are clearly visible 
Head of the vase in detail

At a cost of 70 francs, the vase was one of the most expensive pieces offered at the time in terms of price. The elaborate decoration harmonizes perfectly with its considerable size. This workpiece, like Genre 387, ,,Pink with Silver”, is another example of the Loetz workshop’s glass art. They were supposed to outshine Tiffany’s much more expensive glass objects at the Paris World’s Fair, and they succeeded.

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