Author Topic: Who are the important British Domestic Glass designers of the 20th century?  (Read 25605 times)

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Offline sph@ngw

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I ask this for as many of you may have read, and a few seen, we have opened a Museum of 20th century British Domestic Glass at Nazeing Glass Works.
I have chosen a few I knew and liked starting with Geoffrey Baxter, Ronnie Stennett-Willson, Frank Thrower, Michael Harris ( responsible for starting 4  glass factories- is this a record?), Roger Phillippo, (our in house designer Wild Rose, Executive Suite, etc)..but who else?
Keith Murray? Irene Stevens? Margaret Casson, David Queensbury? Colin Terris? Dairmoid O'Brien (forgive crap spelling!) and  Jane Beebe
Suggestions are welcome!


Offline Frank

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Re: Who are the important British Domestic Glass designers of the 20th century?
« Reply #1 on: September 18, 2007, 05:23:06 PM »
Spelling: Domhnall Ó Broin

Is the criteria Domestic Glassware? What are the exclusions/inclusions?
Frank A.
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Offline Ivo

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Re: Who are the important British Domestic Glass designers of the 20th century?
« Reply #2 on: September 18, 2007, 06:15:22 PM »
What an insular perspective.
Ivo
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Sklounion

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Re: Who are the important British Domestic Glass designers of the 20th century?
« Reply #3 on: September 18, 2007, 06:35:12 PM »
With respect to Ivo's reservations and (imho) justifiable view:
Hardie Williamson, RY Goodden, Annette Meech, John Clappison. E Downey...Luxton, Sutherland, Keith Murray ad infinitum.....
Yes I understand the insular view, but Kny, Pfohl, Frankenhauser and others have all been influential.... British design does not exist in a vacuum, without the exchange and re-interpretation, that the international migration of ideas brings.
Marcus



Offline Frank

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Re: Who are the important British Domestic Glass designers of the 20th century?
« Reply #4 on: September 18, 2007, 08:06:06 PM »
Actually Domnhall is out too, Irish.

I was a little taken aback by the insular remark, after all it is a Museum about British glass and as we know does include non-British items. So the criteria of the exhibits if applied to Domestic Glass designers will allow for non-British inclusions.

But what is the harm in displaying just Brits? I suppose a simple parallel would be a railway train where the first carriage is British, next French, then Dutch, then a few more British... take out the non Brits and only one coach reaches its destination. So trying to illustrate 20th Century domestic glass design with only Brits results in an incomplete picture which will surely leave the observer wondering. In the late 1920's the British government were exhorting the UK glass makers to learn lessons from other countries in the use of designers... indeed it was a German, Peter Behrens, that is widely considered to be the father of Industrial Design. If the 20th century was the first century of design as a discipline then any exhibition is surely at its best if can tell a complete story. A museum is an educational resource and as such has a duty to educate as well as preserve history. A British industrial museum has a right to be just that, but as I think about it, I realise that value would be increased by telling a complete story. Showing how different 'nationalities' have worked together as 'one people' to create, for example, a glass pot totally suited to the task of holding asparagus spears. How the different elements evolved with influences from everywhere and how a British company brought it to market with some 'British' twists, while at the same time it was launched in 20 other countries with localised twists...

Perhaps we also need to consider the modern information age where ideas have few borders, like these forums. I recall not long ago, a US Glass designer consulted this board for ideas for a Swedish glass works. The input came from many countries.

But Stephen, you started with a list but did not clearly state what you were trying to reach. Perhaps that makes a difference in how it is perceived.

A complication is that is sometimes unclear who a designer was. There is no doubt that Monart has had a major impact on glass design in Scotland and to some extent England too. (No, it was not copied from Scheider, nor Daum, nor Baccarat, perhaps influenced by LeGras but that is unconfirmed). The original concept is fairly well agreed to be Salvador Ysart circa 1922, later Mrs Moncrieff was said to be responsible for all of the designs, yet she was out of the picture by the mid 30's. Ian Turner recently showed that Paul Ysart was heavily involved in the pattern books as they are annotated in his hand - a remarkable discovery considering how often he was interviewed in his later life. But there you are left with 3 names to pick on as THE designer - but chronologically Salvador came first, does that entitle him. Did he work with Mrs Moncrieff in creating the drawings, were the 300+ shapes a team effort? Perhaps the designer is better stated as Moncrieff design Team! But none were formally trained in design, nor attended art school, does that make them amateurs - can amateurs be allowed in to the hallowed hall of 'Designer'.  :angel:
Frank A.
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Offline Max

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Re: Who are the important British Domestic Glass designers of the 20th century?
« Reply #5 on: September 18, 2007, 10:28:37 PM »
Quote
So trying to illustrate 20th Century domestic glass design with only Brits results in an incomplete picture which will surely leave the observer wondering.

Fraaaaaaaaank!  It's not an ideal world out there, and a museum has to start somewhere.  Surely the most important thing is securing items for preservation before the history is lost?  We could argue which nationalilities should be included until the cows come home...but it's not progress for the museum, is it?   :huh:

I just can't imagine the complexities of starting a museum from scratch.  I guess one has to keep it simple to start with?






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Offline Frank

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Re: Who are the important British Domestic Glass designers of the 20th century?
« Reply #6 on: September 19, 2007, 08:34:02 AM »
 :) Sure Max. I was discussing issues raised and exploring them, not particularly making judgements.
Frank A.
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Offline Bernard C

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Re: Who are the important British Domestic Glass designers of the 20th century?
« Reply #7 on: September 19, 2007, 11:43:18 AM »
You all appear to have forgotten the two most influential, Adam Dodds I, and Ernest Jobling-Purser.

Bernard C.  8)
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Offline Glen

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Re: Who are the important British Domestic Glass designers of the 20th century?
« Reply #8 on: September 19, 2007, 12:20:54 PM »
You all appear to have forgotten the two most influential, Adam Dodds I, and Ernest Jobling-Purser.

Bernard C.  8)

You took the words right out of my mouth, Bernard. Adam Dodds I for his Tynesyde Glassware (and more). And may I add John Jenkins too?
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Offline Bernard C

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Re: Who are the important British Domestic Glass designers of the 20th century?
« Reply #9 on: September 19, 2007, 12:42:58 PM »
You all appear to have forgotten the two most influential, Adam Dodds I, and Ernest Jobling-Purser.

Bernard C.  8)

You took the words right out of my mouth, Bernard. Adam Dodds I for his Tynesyde Glassware (and more). And may I add John Jenkins too?

I forgot to say why.   Thanks, Glen, for explaining Adam's grandfather.   I included Ernest Jobling-Purser, not for his 1930s art glass, much of it modelled by Etienne Franckhauser (sic), but for his Pyrex.

What was important was what was sold in huge quantities in Woolworth's, Home & Colonial, and the Co-op, not expensive glass sold to the wealthy in a handful of London shops.

Now, Glen, who was John Jenkins?   I've heard the name before, but I can't remember where!

Bernard C.  8)
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