Posted 8 years ago
The story behind this find relates to a family situation where my Mum has decided to sell up the family home and move into a retirement village here in Sydney.
She has been cleaning out everything!
A new stage in her life is beginning and at the age of 92 she needs some help to get the place in order prior to selling. It has meant that I have had to change my habits. Tuesdays is no longer about going out looking for new treasures! Tuesdays has become a day when I arrive at Mum's place and help her out with the clean out!
Later on I go home via a favourite shop where I am a regular.
But the early bird catches the worm .... for the last few weeks I have been too late!
But a couple of weeks ago I came across these ash trays on a shelf overlooked by everyone else until I got there after one in the afternoon.
When I took them to the register to pay, the folks at the desk had a good chuckle: "We thought no one would take them!"
I just said that they were totally to my taste for the unusual.
They were nestled in my hand - totally tactile, secured together by a piece of sellotape. Until I got on the bus to go home I had not checked them all for any faults. They were all there: six in total .... including the smallest of them all which always goes missing!
According to what is written on the net: "At the end of 1952, Walter Bosse moved from Austria, where he lived since his birth in 1904, to Western Germany. He settled in the area of Iserlohn, because creditors were chasing him and his friends and business partners were cheating him. He wanted to concentrate on his job of being an artist. This time was very productive for Bosse, and he created an entire collection of new designs in the late 1950s. During that period, the hedgehog ashtray set was born. It was a revolutionary design, and quickly became popular worldwide. He was not able to even keep up with all the international orders and looked for partners to perform the casting on his behalf. Some foundries used his moulds and masters without discretion and sold models illicitly without his knowledge. Meanwhile, many thousands of copies based on Bosse’s design were being produced and sold throughout the world. The Russian airline Aeroflot even produced a set as a gift given to their frequent flyers. Copies were made in Spain, Greece, England, Austria and Germany. Bosse knew about this, but he kept on selling his hedgehogs at the Frankfurt International Fair for many years. Interestingly enough, Bosse’s hedgehogs could have made him a millionaire: Woolworth offered Bosse a several million dollar contract for the copyright of the ashtray set but Bosse would not agree. He feared that with mass-production, the hedgehogs would lose the charm and quality of his originals."
Dimensions of the stacked group of six:
Length: 10.5 cm or 4.1"
Height: 5.5 cm or 2.2"