I recently picked this up at a show. I saw an example in Pina book "opalescent basket with large circular opening" 1950's. Mine, like the book, is 12 1/2 tall. A friend saw the image and believes it might be a copy. I wonder if the pontil would determine this- rather than being completely flat, it has a shallow round indentation which I tried to photograph. Also the surface has a few raised areas. Were the originals completely flat and smooth? If a copy, who made them and when? Value if original or copy? Thanks for your opinions.
Fratelli Toso used both flat and indented bases. I have had both types for their bowls. The indented base bowls that I had were of the random filigree design. I wondered if the flat bottomed bowls were the originals and the indented bottom ones were later copies that were made by Toso -- Yes, they reproduced their own work. My indented bottom bowls tended to be in better shape and were less ashy and stony than my flat bottomed bowls. Glassmaking had been improved in the 1970's, so later pieces had less ash, etc. I have never seen anything about the differences in the base, but it is possible that there is something to do with the date.
So... yes, it is possible that your basket is a copy, but it could be a copy that Fratelli Toso made. It looks Toso to me, so I think you are safe.
Pontil marks have often been pointed to as making the case that a particular piece of glass is Murano, but I never subscribed to that theory, its too vague.
A pontil mark only means that it was handblown, but doesnt determine geography. The best way to determine authenticity is to do exactly what you have done, research. The quality of the workmanship and the research should point you in the right direction, but not always Im 50/50 on the authenticity of the basket, it looks like a Toso, but your description of the workmanship makes me hesitate.
One of my Toso baskets that still had the label on the bottom had three large tooling marks that were like dents in the upper layers. Some of their craft is far from perfect, but IMO the mistakes add character to the work. I frequently find stones, ash, open bubbles, and tooling marks in Fratelli Toso pieces. I'm not picky about these things, though other people prefer mistake-free work. The imperfections remind me that the glass is handmade.
I like what Bianconi said about mistakes being his favorite thing about working with glass.
not a repro - and from the hands of Fratelli Toso - book value is 300-400 according to Leslie
I agree...its on page 223 in Italian Glass Century 20
Originally Posted by boybob
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