Orrefors Birds on the Wires, Ingeborg Lundin design, 1959, Copper Wheel Engraved, Swedish Crystal Vase

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Ingeborg Lundin was the first female artist hired at Orrefors. She worked there from 1947 to 1971, and may be best known for her large, delicate, very round, handblown, "Apple" vases. By contrast, this sturdier piece is blown into a mould and copper-wheel engraved. Lundin's engraved motifs always show a touch of whimsy, and I think these birds are no exception. They also harken back to some early work by Edward Hald at Orrefors.

This is a medium-sized vase, 6" x 3.25" x 5.25", and heavy, weighing 3.5 pounds. The design code 4032 tells me it was designed around 1961, the date code D7 means that this particular piece was made in 1968, and the initials RP refer to the engraver, Rune Petterson. I never noticed it until today, but one corner has a chip. It was hard to photograph, because it is on a beveled corner. It is a very sweet vase, and its 51-year-old surface is otherwise unblemished. According to the sticker on the base, it was purchased at a store called Berry Tree, probably in the US. Please let me know if you know of the place!

The Orrefors story began in 1726, when an ironworks and smith was built near “the beautiful river that flows into Lake Orranäs” in the Swedish countryside. It was given the name Orrefors, which means “the Orre waterfall.” ("Orre" is the Swedish name for the black grouse, which is the bird seen on their iconic labels.) The foundry was converted to a glassworks in 1898, as the demand for iron decreased. By the mid-1920s, Orrefors was celebrated for the quality and beauty of its glass. The company employed master artists and craftsmen, some of whom worked their whole careers of 40, 50, or more years at Orrefors.

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