Last week we picked up a couple of new pieces of art glass. When we made the purchase — we assumed they were Loetz vases. But like always — we dug in to do our research. A couple of clicks later we found out that we had purchased pieces that belonged in the Bohemian Iridescent Art Glass family — but that they were not all Loetz pieces. So what is Bohemian Iridescent Art Glass — and how is it different from Loetz?
Some of the big names in American Art Glass would include Tiffany and Steuban. But North America was not the only innovative place in the world. And during the Art Nouveau period — there were some fantastic glass designers in and around Czechoslovakia. This body of work is called Bohemian Iridescent Art Glass. Most of these pieces are NOT marked — and many dealers mis-identify the entire genre by calling it Loetz. But just like not every piece of Aurene glass is a Tiffany — not every piece of Bohemian Iridescent Art Glass is a Loetz. Other master designers included Kralik, Rindskopf and Pallme-König. And their work is just as significant and beautiful as Loetz — just less expensive.
So how do you tell the difference?
I’d start by going to www.loetz.com This site does a great job of identifying the surface treatments and decorations that the various designers used. Then I’d visit Loetz and Glass. The pictures on this site are VERY helpful. Finally I’d check out the resource list that Alfredo Villanueva-Collado has put together.
So what did we purchase?
One Loetz. A pair of matching Kralik vases. And a Rindskopf!