This is a fantastic miniature by Daum Nancy. This salt made of clear glass is etched to a frosted white finish. A winter scene is created on the front of the piece using the finish to depict a lake, effectively a clear glass "window" into the salt. The trees and brush are enameled in wonderful black detail with shading in the background to simulate a mountainous setting. The entire salt is finished with a gold rim.
Dimensions: Approximately 3.5 cm (1 ½ in) maximum height.
Condition: Excellent. No chips, cracks or repairs.
Signature: "Daum Nancy" with cross of Lorraine script in gold on the base.
A Note About the Manufacturer:
The Daum's were originally a family of lawyers. Jean Daum, father of the famous Daum brothers, took over a glassworks near Nancy, France, in 1878 as part payment of a debt. His son Auguste joined him to help improve the business and more than a decade later, the younger brother Antonin (a trained engineer) joined them. It was their business and creative skills which made the "Verrerie de Nancy" a success.
The Daum brothers were impressed and influenced by the art glass work of Emile Gallé which they saw at the Paris Exhibition of 1889. Starting with enameled and engraved "art nouveau" style vases, they moved on to become one of the major forces in the art nouveau movement, seriously rivaling Gallé. When Gallé died in 1904 they actually became the industry leaders.
All Daum art glass was signed, the usual signature being 'Daum Nancy' incorporating the cross of Lorraine. Daum glass was always a teamwork effort, and in the early years it was not usually ascribed to a particular artist.
There have been four major eras in the art glass produced by Daum. Each change in style coincided with a new generation of the Daum family taking over, and keeping the company abreast of current taste and fashions.
Art Nouveau: Starting with enameling and engraving around 1891, Daum moved on to art nouveau pieces which often combined multiple techniques, cameo carving, enameling, and acid etching. They continued making art nouveau designs when the factory re-opened after the First World War moving to a new wave of simpler, bolder, designs.
Art Deco: Daum excelled in making art deco glass. Led by Paul Daum, son of Auguste, they designed strong bowls and vases with geometric patterns on thick transparent single-colored glass. The patterns were often acid etched deeply into the thick glass, with alternating bands of polishing and etching.
Crystal: After the Second World War, Daum turned to heavy crystal, colorless and shaped into figures and vessels. Their lead crystal was very high quality, and their art emphasized the flowing qualities of clear glass. On the whole they did not incorporate cutting, engraving, or any other form of surface decoration. This kind of glass was popular for some 25 years, until the 1970s.
Pate-de-verre Nouveau: In 1965 another generation of Daum's took over, and in 1970 took the bold step of reintroducing pate-de-verre. They have invited a number of famous sculptors, designers, and master glass artists, to design special limited edition pieces for the company. Salvador Dali was the first and the series has since been an outstanding success.
The company is still successful today, operating since 1962 as a public company under the name Cristallerie Daum. They produce all kinds of figurines in pate-de-verre and crystal glass, as well as high quality tableware
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