Baccarat loved the Pansy, since it was the flower that Napoleon gave to Josephine. It is a wonderful example of their lampwork, well centered, no internal defects.
This lovely piece has a great deal of glass dome, indicating that it has never been polished. It has the usual slight signs of wear on the base, but overall is in Very Good to Excellent Condition. Unfortunately, the photos are poor. Better photos on request. It is a large paperweight, a bit over 3 inches in diameter.
Provenance: L. H. Selman Glass Gallery.
Created by highly skilled artisans in the great glasshouses in Europe primarily between 1845 and 1860, paperweights were exquisite objects containing glass flowers, birds, salamanders, butterflies, and geometric designs comprised of millefiori canes. The term millefiori, which means "a thousand flowers" in Italian, refers to cross-sectional slices of a glass rod which has been formed in a mold and stretched, much like the making of hard candy. The French factories of Baccarat, Clichy, and Saint Louis rivaled each other in this art form for a short period of time, after which the paperweight became literally a "lost art" until its renaissance in the 1950s. The extraordinary excellence of these 19th century works, as well as their rarity, combine to make antique paperweights some of the best investments in glass art.
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