Posted 2 years ago
I like functional items and as a beginner I have found they are a nice way to collect known decors in identified shapes without breaking the bank. Here we have two Kralik pieces (see how confident I'm getting - no hedging) in known Kralik decors and different sizes of a known Kralik shape - I think of them as a biscuit barrel and a bonboniere. Both are in cobalt glass, but with different decors.
The same biscuit barrel, in two other decors (and slightly different mounts), can be found on page 4 of Alfredo's article on Kralik on Loetz.com. Further, on the same page is a lidded jug in the same bacillus on cobalt glass decor as the bonboniere. Finally, there is a bonboniere in the same size and shape but with different metal mounts on the bacillus page of kralik-glass.com.
The other decor is apparently called fish-scale - again see kralik-glass.com. I particularly like the way the lobed shape of the biscuit barrel emphasises that fish scale decor.
I've been ruminating on the metal mounts on these pieces, as I have several metal mounted functional jars, so I'm inflicting my musings on you. Those sourced from Germany (as these two) have very plain, functional white metal mounts. The one I have from France, and others seen for sale in France, tend to have more elaborate, ormolu style mounts. In the imaginings of a fevered mind, one can almost see a contrast between the elaborate French art nouveau and the more restrained Secessionist or Jugendstil styles with a Charles Rennie Mackintosh influence. Or possibly the differences are more in date - early period with Victorian influence (or fussiness) compared to later period simplicity.
I know Kralik did not make their own metal mounts, but this looks like an example of tailoring to the mores of specific markets - or perhaps times. So, did Kralik decide on the type of mounts themselves with the market in mind, or were the mounts applied by the purchasers from Kralik to suit their specific markets, or did the ordering process allow for customers to specify choice of mount to be applied to "standard models"? Or did they simply change the mounts over time, while retaining the same basic shape?
Or was it as simple as economics - orders for higher end retail outlets got more elaborate mounts?