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Art Nouveau2656 of 2855KRALIK DISCOBOLUS INKWELLS II: DRAPED AND PAMPAS1902 Ludwig Vierthaler “Sea form” Copper & Mother of Pearl Vase
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Posted 5 years ago


(326 items)

The Original Spiraloptish decor was created by Loetz. Almost immediately, other companies began to produce cheaper versions of it. One researcher has attributed them to Welz. I have for a long time maintained they were made by Kralik, because of the existence of inkwells that match the vases in color and pattern. Welz is not known as a maker of inkwells; Kralik is. There is also the question of shape: the "discobolus" shape appears in other Kralik decors, including Drape and Kralik's version of Pampas (See Kralik Inkwells II)

Loetz Spiraloptisch is quite a complex pattern. Kralik vases show far less complexity, and the glass is monochrome, cut from the top, and very lightweight. Inkwells, carrying elaborate tops with German patent marks, are far heavier.

The first inkwell is 5" in diameter. I have tried to show the pattern both from the top and the bottom. The second inkwell has a sad and curious story. It came all the way from Sweden, and in trying to push the top down, I damaged it. But . . . since the essential function is for it to hold the ink in a separate insert, the structural damage does not affect its use.
It is small, only 3" by 3".

Not surprisingly, there is a very strong competition for Czech glass inkwells between inkwell collectors and Czech glass collectors. Inkwells routinely appear as "Loetz", the same as shades. The sad fact is that Loetz made very few inkwells and none for the mass market. Because of the demand, an inkwell may cost far more than a vase in a similar pattern. Please look at my next entry: more Kralik Discobolus inkwells.


  1. Glasshutte Glasshutte, 5 years ago
    Which came first, the Kralik Spiraloptish or Van Gogh's inspiration for 'Starry Night'? Thanks for sharing, Al
  2. cogito cogito, 5 years ago
    Van Gogh, I suspect. Starry Night was painted in 1889.
  3. Alfredo Alfredo, 5 years ago
    That's weird! "Starry Night" being one of my favorite pictures, it was the first thing that came into my mind--but then something else stuck me: these are spirals in movement, with a comet tail and they look like . . . paisley! I have a small SPO Olympia Loetz and and I spent hours trying to get the right pictures. Both Loetz and Kralik SOP appear years after Starry Night, in the early 1900's.
  4. Alfredo Alfredo, 5 years ago
    Actually, I have closed the door on Welz for this particular pattern . . . . but I am keeping my mouth shut . . .

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