“Color is to the eye what music is to the ear.”
Louis Comfort Tiffany (1848-1933)
The glass with which Louis Comfort Tiffany (1848-1933) became famous is a combination of white opalescent glass and clear ‘antique’ coloured glass. At the start of the 20th century, the Tiffany Studios in New York used this inventive glass to design the most stunning lamps with various motifs, such as flower and animal designs, but also geometrical patterns. The lampshades were gorgeous in combination with incandescent lamps, that were produced by Tiffany’s friend Thomas Edison. It was not just glass lampshades that were created with such care: the lamp bases were also pieces of art all by themselves. Usually, they had a shape that harmonised with the design of the glass lampshade, like a branch with leaves, a tree trunk, a flower or even an elegant lady. These beautiful, organically shaped lamp bases were usually cast in bronze. Original Tiffany lamps are very popular at the moment. At an auction, the price of a rare Tiffany lamp can go up to a million dollars.
The Tiffany lamps, Tiffany mirrors and Tiffany window panels of Art Deco Trade are made in a skilful way and according to the authentic Tiffany technique. This is a procedure that requires its maker to have a lot of patience, expertise and precision. First of all, the design team creates a digital design. This is already quite some work when considering that there are thousands of different colours of glass to choose from. The next step is creating a mould for the first sample and dozens or even hundreds of pieces of glass are cut from a flat piece of glass. They need to be put together again with the help of the mould. This is highly detailed work. After this is done, everything is double checked to see if all the pieces of glass have been placed in such a way as the design suggests. Then the copper is placed around the pieces of glass and they are welded together. The object is washed and is checked meticulously for small holes between the many pieces of glass. When the sample is approved, the lamp can definitely be taken into production and the whole process of puzzling glass together starts all over again.
Every Tiffany lamp is unique due to the traditional labour and varieties in colour and texture of the glass. A Tiffany lamp, mirror or panel of Art Deco Trade is delivered with a certificate that also has advice on how to maintain the lamp in good condition.