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Holland, Dutch Glass

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The seventeenth century saw Dutch glass develop a more indigenous character. Large tulip-shaped glasses appeared, and diamond engravings (scratching) on other shapes eventually displaced the Venetian and German patterns which had been the fashion.



Jacob Sang's excellent glass cutting in the eighteenth century was eclipsed by the new diamond stippled glass, an advance over diamond "scratching." Stippling decoration was accomplished by tapping a diamond pointed instrument over a pattern on the glass; an extremely tedious task bordering on a "penance or a perversion" (the very apt description of W. A. Thorpe). Outstanding exponents of this method, Aert Schouman, D. Wolff, and Frans Greenwood, were able to transfer portraits and other exacting paintings to their glass. Had they been of larger talents and more discerning, they might have left posterity some very indelible Rembrandts.

Following the nineteenth century lull in the glass industry, Holland's revival was headed by H. P. Berlage, an architect, and Gerard Muller, whose artistic creations were at first made in foreign factories. Berlage's water glasses and Muller's drinking services met immediate favor with the Dutch.

The Leerdam factory working with the architect, De Bazel, prior to 1923, realigned their ideas and to the present time Leerdam glass has forged ahead. C. de Lorm contrib uted to Leerdam factory an extremely practical household glass of pleasing lines and designs. Leerdam's much favored flower and fruit designs have come largely from the mind of A. D. Copier. Another brilliant artist, Chris Le Beau, left his imprint on Leerdam wares. Until 1925 he was a linen designer with the Van Dissel firm; on transferring his art and ideas to Leerdam the longer stemmed flowers, twigs, and leaves of linen designs began to appear on the Dutch glass and made an immediately favorable impression. After some years at Leerdam, Le Beau went to the Winterberg Glass Works in Czechoslovakia.

Unica glass, a Copier and Le Beau creation, is an alluring, clouded glass, unique in that the clouded appearance often forms fleeting patterns in the otherwise unclouded glass.

Among modern Dutch glass the work of C. Lanooy, a ceramist, and Jaap Gidding have revived interest in enamelled ware with their artistry at Leerdam; especially effective are Lanooy's fish motifs. C. Agterberg's single black line decoration is striking in its simple dignity; and the bottles and flagons of J. Jongert and F. van Alphen are interesting in conception and design.

Dutch factories, having mastered practically every known technical glass procedure, now are sagaciously adding the counsel and creative efforts of noted artists. Their present popularity is the deserved increment to this shrewd policy.



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