Vase, France, Lorraine (Nancy), designed by Emile Gallé, for Gallé glassworks, 1900-1900, 1625-1900 .
Height: 13.6 cm, Width: 8.6 cm maximum
Glass, room 131
Shown in the international exhibition, Paris, 1900 at which Gallé was awarded a gold medal. In this dark and sombre vase the black glass is overlaid on clear glass. Described by Gallé as 'hyalite', this particularly sooty black glass was a Gallé invention and was used especially in the series known as 'vases de Tristesse'. In his writings he attributed the grey, iridescent glint to carbon deposits in the kiln which 'provoked an incipient reduction of the iron peroxide'. The thistle was the symbol of Lorraine, of which the city of Nancy, Gallé's home, was the centre. It was often used as an expression of defiance during the periods of conflict with Prussia, as was the Cross of Lorraine.