Strömbergshyttan Boy with Flowers Hand-Engraved Ice Blue Oval Swedish Crystal Vase


This is a lovely example of 1970s art glass from Strömbergshyttan. Its design is likely an earlier one from Asta Strömberg that was adapted for a new technique. In the late 1940's, a skilled glass artist and craftsman named Rune Strand, inspired by his neighbor the dentist, invented a pen-style engraver. The engraving technique using this new tool is sometimes called dental drill engraving, and this piece was made with that method. A fellow glass group member told me that his uncle, Ragnar Bergqvist, who was both a copper-wheel and dental drill engraver, sometimes corrected or continued Asta's sketches to make them possible to engrave with the new technique. This vase may be one of Ragnar's design updates. That's pretty cool.

It is a medium-sized vase, about 5.5 inches tall and 5 inches across, and heavy, weighing 2.7 pounds. It is in excellent condition, clear and sparkling, with just a tiny flea bite on the front rim, as seen in the photos. The base is fully signed, and the numbers on its base tell us about the date of the vase design and the motif design. The vase, B924, and the motif, C952, were both designed in the late 60s or early 70s. The photos show how the depth of color changes with the light, from barely blue to a bright, vivid hue.

Here is a little of the story of Strömbergshyttan. In 1876, a glassworks called Lindfors ("winding falls") opened about 50 km west of Orrefors. In 1933, Edward Strömberg, who was a former head at Orrefors, and his wife Gerda, who was a designer at Eda, leased the company and changed the name to Strömbergshyttan ("Strömberg's hut"). Edward and his son Eric devised a way to produce a glass that had a bluish-silver hue, which became characteristic for Strömbergshyttan. Eric Strömberg and his wife, Asta, bought the company in 1945 and modernized it. For most of the 40+ years that the family controlled the glass mill, Gerda and Asta Strömberg designed the glass. Let's hear it for women leading the design work!

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