I will have to let Alisa confirm this, but if memory serves me correctly the iridescence is over a clear layer, which in the area where the iridescence is thin, allows the inner white opalescent vessel show through. Depending on what angle the iridescence was applied from, the "shadow" effect of the higher areas of the texture would account for variations in the intensity of the iridescence as a result of thickness of application.
Nothing on the piece about the iridescence says higher quality than the iridescence on many other nice pieces. The overall visual impact and feel of the piece, having seen and held it to examine it, speaks volumes to the level of execution. For a piece displaying many techniques, it is one of the better executed pieces I have ever seen in person..... None of the images really do the vase justice.......
In general, let me address my thoughts on the "French" controversy. I started this thread with French being a question of possibility. It was my initial reaction to the piece. Hence, the title includes French?? I did that....
I originally posted this in the hopes that someone would recognize and identify it before I bid on it at the auction.... No one did, and Alisa had a deeper pocket than mine at the time of sale, so she is the proud owner, and not I. :cry: :cry:
I have researched and looked, since the auction, for information that would tend to lead me one direction or another and have not found anything that I would consider to be solid enough to make me lean a new direction on the piece. I really have no vested interest in where it is from, and I really do not care at all, I only am curious, as is Alisa since she owns it.... :cry: :cry: :cry: (I can't help myself). I understand and hear all of the reasons that people think it may be Bohemian, I personally am inclined to think that if not French, Bohemian is most likely. I do not see the piece as American in any light. I also have a tough time getting behind an English attribution... There is a little voice, that sometimes speaks to me and when it does I listen, and on this piece it keeps talking French to me.
I would look to the enamel work and the feel and style of it as my greatest indicator.... and I could be all wet here, but my gut says no at this point...
There is conversation here that no one can locate a French company that did his type of iridescent work, but if the piece were that easy to identify we would not be spending this much time on it. There are French companies, as noted additionally here by Kristi, that did work in iridescent glass, examples are just not that easy to locate.... The fact that this piece is so over the top in execution, yet so difficult to attribute is part of what makes me look in the direction of the less likely.
IMHO if it were Bohemian, with Truitt, Passau catalogs, Ricke, etc...and the many other fine pieces of documentation we have available to us, it would seem to me that somewhere, through all of the documentation, someone would have taken a picture of a piece like this. No one has been able to do that.
With that said, and with the only other very similar piece we can reference to in a picture is a Loetz attribution by Rago on a piece I would bet heavily is by the same house and not by Loetz, my gut continues to say it feels French.
In light of all of this, my instincts say look to the unexpected, especially if looking to the much more obvious fails a result.