Artists often create works in many different mediums – ceramics, painting, sculpture, jewelry, and even metalwork. After World War I, many artists traveled to different countries and schools to learn new “looks” and new techniques. England, France, Germany and Scandinavia were prominent art centers.
Vally Wieselthier (1895-1945) was famous in Germany in the 1920s but almost unknown in the United States. She was born in Austria and studied with Michael Powolny from 1914 to 1920, then continued to work with the artists of the new Wiener Werkstatte. She was a leading ceramic artist and designer, making figurines, female heads, vases and more.
In 1929, she moved to the United States and worked in New York making large ceramic statues and also designed tableware for the Sebring factory in Ohio; ironstone tableware designs for Mayer Pottery in Trenton, New Jersey; and worked at Cowan Pottery, Ohio, where she introduced the Wiener Werkstatte style. She also designed glassware, jewelry, textiles, papier-mâché mannequins, furniture, and even metal elevator doors.
With all of its success and fame, few pieces are seen in American auctions. Neal Auction Company sold a 20cm tall Wiener Werkstatte vase made in 1925 and signed with both “WW” for Wiener Werkstatte and “VW” for Vally Wieselthier for $ 1,037.
My aunt gave me a perfume lamp 50 years ago. It is a figurative dog sitting and begging. It has perforations on the head, a place for perfume on the back of the head, and large glass eyes where light can shine through. Can you tell me something about scent lamps?
Maurice Berger, a French pharmacist, invented the perfume lamp in 1897 when he added perfume to lamp oil or other liquid fuel. Electric scent lamps that used a bulb to heat the scent were made in the early 1900s. The scent is emitted through small holes in the lamp.
Scent lamps have been made in many different figurative forms and have been made by manufacturers in several different countries. The lamp with a bulb, but without the scent inside, is often used as a night light. Today, a battery-operated or plug-in product, diffuser or spray can be used to pleasantly scent a room.
Silver dish, bowl, Candara, smooth organic shape, marked, Lino Sabattini, Italy, 4 1/2 x 9 3/4 inches, $ 25.
Advertising, jar, Eat Tom’s Toasted Peanuts, clear glass, black lettering, overhanging lid, red button with Tom’s, 11 x 9 inches, $ 150.
Lure, rainbow trout, wood, painted, shades of green, pink and teal, tack eyes, Miles Smith, circa 1973, 9 1/2 by 32 inches, $ 280.
Jewelry, bracelet, bangle, Clic Clac, articulated with H-twist clasp, steel, inlaid enamel band, marked, Hermes K, 7 inches, $ 365.
Advice: You can safely store an old quilt by placing it on an unused bed and covering it with a plain blanket or sheet.