Posted 3 years ago
In the 1980's, I bought the 14" vase in the first picture. It had a Loetz signature embossed at the bottom, which the dealer swore was a fake. I thought otherwise. Much later, to my astonishment, in a 1901 Pazaurek book I found the decor on my vase identified as having been created by the Czech firm of Karl Goldberg (Pic. 2) , thus showing the close collaboration between Czech glass makers and decorating companies. I acquired a couple of other vases with the same decor. Then I found another who seemed to scream "Goldberg" at me because of its similar duck motif and its grainy surface.
A friend quickly corrected me. It had been made much later by the German firm of Füger and Tauber. I did some research on the history of the firm. It was founded by the brothers Füger, who were Czech and had worked for Goldberg, and then acquired by a fellow called Taube! It closed in 1995. Picture 3 shows Goldberg and F&T
vases together, to highlight the similarity in the respective decors, and picture 4, yet another example of F&T provided by my helpful friend.
This surprising story does not end yet, for perusing Sigfried Wichmann's definitive volume on Japonisme, I found similar depictions of wild ducks in flight, and detailed studies of the feather designs, which is one of the markers of Goldberg's decor.
These vases show not only the direct influence of the Czech glass industry on German glass making, but the extent and persistence of Japanese art in Western culture.