CHARISMATIC CHARM OF THE VASE

By: John Hogan

The vase is an open container which is often used to hold cut flowers. It can be made from a number of mediums: brass, bronze, copper, glass, gold, pewter, porcelain, pottery and silver.

CHINESE EGGSHELL VINTAGE PORCELAIN VASE, C. 1960-1980

CHINESE EGGSHELL VINTAGE PORCELAIN VASE

CHALET GLASS ORANGE CRYSTAL VASE WITH GREEN FLUTED EDGE

CHALET GLASS VASE WITH GREEN FLUTED EDGE

CHINESE EXPORT BLUE & WHITE PORCELAIN VASE, C. 1910-1920

CHINESE EXPORT BLUE & WHITE VASE

AMERICAN BRILLIANT CUT GLASS CENTER VASE, C. 1910-1920

BRILLIANT CUT GLASS CENTER VASE

PAIR OF MEIJI PERIOD JAPANESE ANTIQUE SATSUMA VASES, C. 1880-1900

MEIJI PERIOD JAPANESE ANTIQUE SATSUMA VASES

The vase is often decorated and thus used to extend the beauty of its contents. Many vases also had applied handles. Today the shapes of vases have evolved from the conventional ones to modern designs and shapes. The vase has also developed as an art medium unto itself. Such a form to exhibit a floral arrangement was always the mark of the affluent as a welcoming feature to the home or stately residence. As the masses became more affluent everyone began to see the charisma of the vase. Of course flowers are an expression of nature's beauty and beauty has to be presented fashionably. What a better way than to exhibit their beauty than to present them in a beautifully decorated vase!

The object we came to know as a vase seems to have derived its origins in Greek history starting with the famous Portland vase for which Josiah Wedgwood became so famous in producing a great replica during 1787. As time passed by many great designers such as Emile Galle, Rene Lalique, Steuben, Tiffany and Loetz produced their amazing creations in art glass. This is not to say that there were not other brilliant creations produced in other mediums. By circa 1900 there were a terrific number of potters from Europe and the United States producing superior vases in other mediums such as cut glass, pottery and fine porcelain.  The Bohemians became known for their cut crystal, the Americans for their brilliant cut glass and pottery; and the English, French and Germans for their very fine porcelains.  Hence the opulent creations were now being created in every possible medium that was evident in every great World Exposition or World's Fair.

Whatever the occasion, a Vase always has a stately presence to formally present beautiful flowers to suit the appropriate occasion. As a choice vessel for holding fresh cut flowers and arrangements, vases are seen in churches, hospitals, restaurants, at wedding receptions, funeral parlors, graduation ceremonies and other stately events. They may be one of the most significant and functional art forms ever produced. They are great for gift giving for any event and season of the year. Vases make a very classic and neutral gift suitable for any person for any occasion.

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