A Unique And Mysterious Vase

Unknown maker, late Victorian hand-painted glass vase

Unknown maker, late Victorian hand-painted glass vase

This unique glass vase was purchased by long-time Berowra resident Merle Davis at auction in 1984 from one of the first homes built in Berowra circa 1895, called The Laurels. The auction comprised an extensive list of antiques and collectables; it attracted a huge crowd on the day with many bidders and spectators vying for some spectacular items. The Laurels was a well-known guesthouse in its heyday, a welcome retreat for people mostly escaping the hubbub of city life on the weekends. Unfortunately the house no longer exists due to the recent redevelopments happening in Berowra.

An exceptional piece of hand-blown glass made during the turn of the last century, the vase is stylised in what is known as the ‘grotesque’. It was fortunate that my mother-in-law then gifted us the vase, which remains a great talking piece with our visitors due to its unusual design. One friend suggested that perhaps a collective of glassmakers around the1900s had made it. She could see it as an experimental piece, its production would have been done after hours by hands utilising the left over’s of the working day. I have found no other vase comparable to this one and certainly agree that this late Victorian vase in the spirit of its making has stood the test of time.

Can you add any information?


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One thought on “A Unique And Mysterious Vase

  1. Helen Wood says:

    Hi Rhonda
    I have tried several times to do this and have been interrupted so hope I get there this time.
    What a wonderful and interesting piece of glassware. I have long been interested in both vintage and antique china and glassware although mainly china. If you want to find out more about this beautiful vase I know of a site, although it is a long while since I was there, http://www.arts.gov.au/cgp where there is a list of approved valuers who may be able to give you more information. From memory once you get there you will have to scroll down quite a few pages maybe 20 or more to come to a list of those dealing with glass etc.prior to the 1900’s
    Also has anyone looked with a magnifying glass to see if there is any markings on it. These are mainly on the bottom but could be anywhere at all on the piece and at times is difficult to see. I would love to know anything more you are able to find out about this unusual piece. Thank you for sharing this with us. Hi to Merle and Neil it was a great surprise and privilege to find them after almost a life time.

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