I have some superb information on the Swedish company Åseda Glasbruk. I received it from the Smålandsmuseum in Sweden who have kindly allowed me to post the information. It is taken from some press releases in English from 1969.
Below is the museums contact details.
Mrs. Gunnel Holmér
Smålands museum -Swedish Glass Museum, Växjö
Here is the first article;
ÅSEDA GLASBRUK AB
ÅSEDA - A YOUNG GLASSWORKS WITH FRESH IDEAS
Åseda is one of the youngest members of the world renowned family
of Swedish glassworks, having been established in 1947, or more than
200 years later than the oldest existing company. Several highly experienced glassblowers were among the original founders, and it wasn!t long before they were joined by other skilled craftsmen in the intricate
art of glassmaking.
Åseda started out on a modest scale by manufacturing laboratory glass
and stemware, which constituted the principal products until about
1960. Shortly after that date the company launched an ambitious
program of colorful ornamental crystal, mostly designed by the
eminent Swedish artist Bo Borgström. He has been creating glass
designs for Åseda since 1961.
Today Åseda has 100 employees, a medium-size company in relation to
other Swedish glassworks. The artisans work with simple tools blowing
pipes, shears, wooden moulds and techniques which have remained virtually unchanged for hundreds of years. They also work with the pride of honest craftsmen.
A visit to the Åseda Glassworks during working hours is always a
dramatic and rewarding experience. With rhythmic, almost dance-like
grace and precision, teams of artisans transform shapeless, molten
glass, fired at temperatures of up to 2,200 degrees Fahrenheit, into
flawless works of crystal art.
A blob of liquid glass is gathered from the red-hot melting pot on
the end of a blowing pipe. It must be kept in constant motion. The
master craftsman blows into the pipe, spins it, shapes the expanded
glass before dropping it gently into the wooden mould at exactly the
right moment, This delicate operation requires not only skill but
Technical improvements, such as firing the furnaces with oil instead
of using wood as in former years, have been initiated at Åseda. But
the actual process of glassmaking is still done by hand. The human
element is ever-present in the glasshouse, and the same applies
to the cutting and grinding shops where the final touches are applied
to the glass objects. Rigid inspection insures that no imperfect
item leaves the factory.
Glassmaking is not an easily acquired skill-it takes up to 15 years,
for instance, to become a master glass blower. In Sweden this tradition
is often handed down from father to son, from one generation to
another. At Åseda a father and his son sometimes work together at
the same task, one handling the blowing pipe, the other shaping the
Åseda has always stressed teamwork and intimate cooperation, from
the designer to the craftsmen to the salesmen. "The master blower
must be on your wavelength or a design won't work out," says
managing director Kaj Engstrand.
Here is the second article;
ÅSEDA GLASBRUK AB
360 70 ÅSEDA
The company's policy is to carefully scrutinize every new design before
going ahead with production. Out of 100 sketches perhaps 25 will proceed
to the detailed drawing stage and 15 to the mould stage. Further eliminations are made after experiments are carried out in the glasshouse, and in the end an average of only six to eight are actually produced.
Åseda's products are characterized by solid craftsmanship, fresh ideas
in design and a flair for color. The company is not only young in years
but also youthful in its outlook. And within a relatively short span
of time, little more than two decades, Åseda has become one of Sweden's
top exporters of glassware.
The firm is located in the town of Åseda in the southeastern province
of Småland, dubbed the "glass district" because the majority of Swedish
glass makers have their factories here. It is a pleasant community of
less than 4,000 inhabitants, wonderfully set in the wooded highlands
Its origins go back almost a thousand years when Åseda was founded as a market and church town. Part of the white church in the center of town
dates from the 12th century and forms quite a contrast to the nearby
modern hotel where many buyers stay when visiting the Åseda Glassworks.
Here is the third article;
ASEDA GLASBRUK AB
BO BORGSTRÖM, A VERSATILE SWEDISH DESIGNER
Bo Borgström had already gained considerable recognition as a ceramics
artist when Åseda invited him to try his hand at glass designing. His
debut glass collection in 1961 was an immediate success, both from an
artistic and sales standpoint and he has been designing the company's
principal products ever since.
Like many of Sweden's most prominent designers Borgström is a product
of Konstfackskolan, the Stockholm-based Swedish School of Arts and Crafts, from which he graduated in 1951.
Although many of his sketches and drawings are made at his studio in a
Stockholm suburb, Borgström feels he is most creative during the periods
(two to three week stretches, seven or eight times a year) when he is
at the factory. He finds it stimulating to work in the glasshouse with
the Åseda craftsmen, with whom he has a close relationship. Here he
experiments with new forms and techniques.
Borgström often uses a technique as his point of departure, building
up an entire series of glass objects around it. Sometimes a new color
or color combination can be the inspiration for a new line. Otherwise,
he says, you have to start with an old form and modify it, a process
which he finds unsatisfactory.
Bo Borgström's design philosophy can be summed up in one word: simplicity. "It's more difficult to make a simple form than a complicated one," he says. "I usually start with something complicated and work to simplify it."
Borgström also believes that glass forms should keep in step with the
times and other furniture styles. This is equally true of colors.
"Glass cannot be isolated from other trends," he says, "and there
must be a constant renewal."
Borgström is a master in the use of color, which plays a very significant
role in most of his designs. He feels he expresses himself best in
color glass. Happily, the skilled artisans at the Åseda Glassworks also
feel at home with color. They are seldom at a loss to carry out this
fine artist's design intentions.
I have more in formation on Åseda Glasbruk but unfortunately it is in Swedish. I am trying to translate it.
The most information contained in this post is, I think, the details on Bo Borgström. Little is known about him or indeed the factory!
I hope that this is of help and interest.