Author Topic: Sam Herman:- A National Treasure  (Read 1562 times)

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Offline chopin-liszt

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Re: Sam Herman:- A National Treasure
« Reply #10 on: November 17, 2011, 05:14:58 PM »
well, it's very nearly its 44th birthday around now. I've got Mark's book out to make sure I get my dates and info. correct. I'm quoting a lot here - but not word for word, mostly pps 12-15, and much abrieviated.
"Michael Harris; Mdina Glass and Isle of Wight Studio Glass"

Effectively, the Studio Glass Movement was born in America of what came to be known as "The Toledo Seminars", between Harvey Littleton (a ceramicist who built a small furnace and wanted to try melting glass to work with at low temperatures) and Dominic Labino, (who attended the first seminar and had the idea of melting the kind of glass used for making marbles - which worked - Littleton's first experiments didn't work well.) and by 1963, Littleton was teaching these new techniques at an offshoot of the University of Wisconsin.
One of his students was Sam Herman, who won a Fulbright Scolarship to study cold-working techniques in Edinburgh in '65 - where he met Helen Munro-Turner (A wonderful bit of serendipity!).
With her support, he organised an exhibition of the new "studio" style work, and a small, (but short-lived) furnace was also built there in Edinburgh. Lord Queensbury (Professor at the RCA) saw the exhibition - and he was enthralled.
He invited Sam to London to become a Research Fellow in the glass departnment.
So, in Autumn '66, Sam arrived in London and two small "tank" furnaces were built.

Michael Harris was, at the time, a tutor in industrial glass at the RCA, but had had some experience with hot glass during his travels abroad and was desperately keen to get going in this sort of direction - Sam's presence, his lecture and his teaching of working with hot glass were just what Michael Harris needed.

It was shortly after this that Michael Harris resigned from the RCA, upped sticks and went off to Malta in December '67, to found Mdina, and Sam Herman took over at the RCA and went on to start the Glasshouse.

So, this piece I now hold in custody for posterity was made at the RCA at that very time!

The birth of the British Studio Glass Movement.

Cheers, Sue (M)

“All things are subject to interpretation. Whichever interpretation prevails at a given time is a function of power and not truth.” Friedrich Nietzsche


Offline Frank

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Re: Sam Herman:- A National Treasure
« Reply #11 on: November 17, 2011, 10:25:15 PM »
Lovely to have such a wonderful piece of history Sue! Mind you I cannot say it is my cup of tea but can certainly appreciate it. Sort of fits in with Mdina too. And NATIONAL TREASURE it certainly is too! Hope it finds a good home up in a museum up there one day.

I prefer some of Greg's but I guess they are equally important if made at the same time. You don't mention how yours are signed Greg.
Frank A.
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Offline Greg.

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Re: Sam Herman:- A National Treasure
« Reply #12 on: November 18, 2011, 06:22:09 PM »
Frank - Here's a brief description of how each piece is signed, I should mention that these pieces came from my late father, who used to teach in the industrial school at the RCA in the 60s and 70s. All would date from the late 60s which Sam kindly confirmed a few years ago.

The first piece is signed Samuel J Herman and has a four digit number/letter code which is hard to mark out.
The second piece is signed Samuel J Herman 1969 RCA London, and also has a personal inscription to my father, which makes this piece all the more special to me.
The third piece, I can't seem to find a signature on, although Sam thinks it is signed somewhere, however would date to around 68.
The piece in the last photo is signed Samuel J Herman 1968 RCA London

Hope this helps.

Greg






Offline Frank

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Re: Sam Herman:- A National Treasure
« Reply #13 on: November 18, 2011, 10:25:36 PM »
Cool - so a thread full of Museum pieces. Probably with the highest total value of almost any thread on the board!
Frank A.
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Offline MHJ02

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Re: Sam Herman:- A National Treasure
« Reply #14 on: November 29, 2011, 12:10:59 PM »
On my recent visit to the UK, I went to the Glass Fair with a friend, a fellow Monart collector, who started to talk enthusiastically about Sam Herman.   Being a little deaf (well that's my excuse) I  had to ask him to repeat the name several times as I've never heard of him.   This lead me to look him up on the net to see exactly what he made and why he is now collectable.   

I then logged on here and found Sue's excellent informative piece on Sam.   If he is a national treasure, presumably his pieces are highly collectable.   Not that I'm intending to start collecting Sam's work, but out curiousity what sort of prices does his pieces achieve.


Many thanks
Mary


Offline chopin-liszt

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Re: Sam Herman:- A National Treasure
« Reply #15 on: November 29, 2011, 12:37:06 PM »
The title of this thread is a play on words - I bought the piece at the recent "National" fair and it is my treasure - but I do think the double meaning is completely appropriate. :smg:

I also think Frank's comment might be a bit off-track  :thud: - given there is a member here who collects claret jugs which are in price echelons unthinkable by most folk - just one of those jugs would buy you perhaps 15 substantially important pieces by Sam!

I believe Sam's current work is priced at around £700 - £1,000+

The secondary market, as I'm sure you know, is variable and dependant on loads of factors.
If you want to get a decent overview of the secondary market, try watching pieces on ebay to see what they go for.
 
Obviously, prices at Fairs are different to ebay - it's a completely different set of circumstances.

The sellers have to make their margin and take into account the trouble, time, knowledge, expertise and considerable expense they put in to finding such treasures, obtaining them and then setting themselves up at the fair - which includes travelling, time, petrol and the cost of their stand.

Was it the National in Birmingham you went to, Mary? :)

Cheers, Sue (M)

“All things are subject to interpretation. Whichever interpretation prevails at a given time is a function of power and not truth.” Friedrich Nietzsche


Offline MHJ02

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Re: Sam Herman:- A National Treasure
« Reply #16 on: November 29, 2011, 04:47:24 PM »
Yes Sue, it was the Glass Fair at the Nat. M/C Museum.    What I like about the glass fair is the opportunity to look at all the different types of glass, especially some of the modern glass, I never thought I would sercombe to modern glass.   I met Alan at the fair for the first time and saw his glass and some of it is very, very nice indeed.

My horizons have been opened now knowing about Sam Herman

Thank you Sue  :hiclp:

Mary



Offline Patrick

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Re: Sam Herman:- A National Treasure
« Reply #17 on: November 29, 2011, 04:48:36 PM »


Offline chopin-liszt

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Re: Sam Herman:- A National Treasure
« Reply #18 on: November 29, 2011, 06:06:31 PM »
I've got a couple of other early bits I need to photograph to put here too. They all went out of focus and wonky when I tried before.
I'm delighted to have helped introduce you to the joys of modern and contemporary glass, Mary!
However, if you started on Monart, you clearly have good taste in hot-worked glass, it can't have been too hard to get your juices flowing! :thup:

ummmm - which Alan? I got a bit...... sidetracked after gettting my Sam bit, which ate my budget, but I did manage to find Allister Malcolm - never a man to miss!
Cheers, Sue (M)

“All things are subject to interpretation. Whichever interpretation prevails at a given time is a function of power and not truth.” Friedrich Nietzsche


Offline Frank

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Re: Sam Herman:- A National Treasure
« Reply #19 on: November 29, 2011, 06:44:01 PM »
I also think Frank's comment might be a bit off-track  :thud:

Often are  :) but I don't let that stop me. Of course British Studio Glass is horribly undervalued. Dresser's Clutha does very well of course and Ysart glass had its hey-day too!

Migrating from Monart to Studio glass is a small step Mary - essentially it is the same thing separated by a 'movement' and its definition. It was interesting in Edinburgh that Nigel's talk dealt with defining Monart as early studio glass... as too in the US there are many contenders for 'early' studio glass there. Perth auctioneers have also invented the term Vasart (and Monart) Studio glass - intended to imply a superior part of the production and encourage higher bids, but misleading nonetheless.
Frank A.
Please help preserve glass web-sites for posterity by donating to The Glass Study Association a non-profit organisation.
Scotland's Glass - Ysart Glass
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