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Author Topic: Help please with Mdina Chalice signature........  (Read 3813 times)

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Offline glassobsessed

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Re: Help please with Mdina Chalice signature........
« Reply #20 on: October 21, 2014, 11:38:50 AM »
Thanks Patrick, that explains the familiarity.

 
The writing does go diagonally across the foot but but I think if someone was going to do a fake signature he would try and do it as those that are freely available to view online.
You would think so, but the faked signatures that I have seen are often wildly inaccurate, including incorrect spelling, upper instead of lower case, incorrect placement etc, etc. The people who fake signatures are interested in fooling somebody into paying more, to do so they need someone with both an interest in a given item and a lack of knowledge about that item, otherwise they would not be duped so easily. The forger does not give two hoots about accuracy, all they see is greed and often they are not too bright (see above).

Then there is the problem of wanting to believe an item is genuine - I have been caught by that too, the desire to add another item to my collection is strong.

It is not so much that I think the signature cannot be Ettore Boffo it is just that I remain to be convinced that it is. As already stated more than one person signed the very same names, so 'signatures' will differ.

Maybe the thought that a lot of the early stuff may in fact have been made by Boffo or Jim Munnelly and not Michael Harris at all doesn't sit too comfortable with the MH purists could be a factor  ;)
Chris, that is utter rubbish and as far as I am concerned patronising.

Offline chopin-liszt

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Re: Help please with Mdina Chalice signature........
« Reply #21 on: October 21, 2014, 11:47:29 AM »
i'm always happy to accept new info. that appears if it can be substantiated.
I'm a scientist - when info. does not support the theory, the theory must be abandoned.

I don't know anything about a Jim Munnelly, I'd be happy to find out.
I have a fair number of early experimental pieces I know are Boffo (rather than Harris) and I'm very happy about them being lovely early Boffo bits.

All this sort of silly stooshie is a major reason I detest and mostly try to ignore pawmarks and just look at the glass.
Nobody here has commented on the chalice itself.  ???












Cheers, Sue (M)

"Cherish those that seek the truth;
 Beware of them who find it."
Grimm.

Offline flying free

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Re: Help please with Mdina Chalice signature........
« Reply #22 on: October 21, 2014, 11:56:41 AM »
there is a possibly interesting comment in Mark Hill's book page 24 (I'm quoting it all, so in light of new evidence on the other post from What ho! please ignore the comment he makes about Ettore and Vicente joining at the same time as that is not the point I want to highlight)

'As the studio's sales grew, Michael needed further experienced and skilled help with making the glass so that he could keep up with the constant demand from distributors and continue to work on improving the skills of his team of trainees.  This had been anticipated before he left England and in October 1969, the team of twelve was joined by Ettore Boffo and his father Vicente (also known as Poppa), who were experienced blowers from WhitefriarsBoth had trained in glassmaking in Italy and had grown dissatisfied with the repetitive nature of their work at Whitefriars, which focused purely on making goblets.'

My point is, that this paragraph seems to say that Ettore was an experienced glassblower who had trained in Italy and had been doing repetitive work at Whitefriars focusing purely on making goblets.  I've never seen a chalice but believe them to be much larger than goblet size, however this paragraph does seem to say that Ettore was experienced and trained in making that shape.

Adding also that on page 25 it says with regards the Boffos arriving at Mdina
'...Simple goblets and chalices and candlesticks with trailed, 'craggy' stems ( see page 48) were also introduced upon their arrival...'
Page 48 shows a Chalice and says 'made by Michael Harris and signed around the foot rim ' Michael Harris Mdina Glass Malta'. c1970..'

m

Offline flying free

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Re: Help please with Mdina Chalice signature........
« Reply #23 on: October 21, 2014, 12:14:06 PM »
see my post above

and further info can be found on page 48 where it says
'One of the most common shapes found is a large, decorative goblet or chalice that is too large to be of functional use as a drinking vessel.  It was designed by Michael together with Ettore and Vicente Boffo, who had both been responsible for making goblets, amongst a couple of other shapes, at the Whitefriars glass factory in England.  Upon their arrival at the Mdina studio in 1969, their experience allowed this form to be introduced.'

So it seems to me there is nothing I could find to say that Ettore (or Vicente) couldn't have made a chalice.
I guess the 1uestion is, is the signature period to the piece? and does it read Ettore ( I read it as 'Ettore?' or 'Ettore!' with a squiggle underneath)

m


Offline chopin-liszt

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Re: Help please with Mdina Chalice signature........
« Reply #24 on: October 21, 2014, 12:53:14 PM »
Somebody from wfs said, fairly recently, that Ettore was "just" his father's assistant, and did not have any great skill of his own, but I can't remember who said it or where.

A lot of "info." seems to be contradictory, I'm not willing to "side" with any one position or another, but I do take the caveats of newspaper "stories" into consideration; I don't really trust them.
If both Boffos had trained in Italy and at wfs, they both had plenty of time to develop their skills, I would suspect they were likely both to be rather good, personally.

Does anybody have any examples of work known to be by Jim Munnelly, so that his "hand" in glassworking could be compared with that of known pieces by Boffo or Harris?

I like your point, m. that; "would this pawmark be consistent with the period in which the piece was made?" and I would say no. Absolutely not. I don't like the way it's written in the "wrong" place, I don't like the wobbles in the lines of the words "Mdina Glass Malta", they are faltering, not confident and the squiggle could be trying to emulate either a Dobson or a Said squiggle. There could be an E at the beginning - but does it stand for Eric or Ettore?
Or is it just a complete fake?
I don't know. My guts suspect a dremmeller at a much later date.

It's a lovely chalice and it was a good price, Patrick. It would have been a good price for a completely unmarked one.

Cheers, Sue (M)

"Cherish those that seek the truth;
 Beware of them who find it."
Grimm.

Offline flying free

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Re: Help please with Mdina Chalice signature........
« Reply #25 on: October 21, 2014, 12:58:18 PM »
Sue, I also remember reading a comment somewhere about Ettore being an assistant or something - I can't remember the wording but it definitely left me with the opinion that he wasn't an experienced glassmaker.
However reading all the various comments above in Mark Hill's book seems to imply that he was trained and experienced glassmaker.
m

Offline flying free

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Re: Help please with Mdina Chalice signature........
« Reply #26 on: October 21, 2014, 01:18:46 PM »
Sorry to appear stupid, but Patrick when you say the signature is 'scribed rather then dremmeled' do you mean it has been signed with a diamond point engraver?
It doesn't look like the same tool used to engrave as that used on the sigs Sue has shown is what I mean specifially first sig and last sig where the juddering can be seen in the lines.
Michael Harris used a diamond point engraver didn't he?

m

Offline flying free

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Re: Help please with Mdina Chalice signature........
« Reply #27 on: October 21, 2014, 01:23:47 PM »
This was the comment about Ettore's glass skills
'Ettore was not a highly skilled glassblower and was his father's servitor whilst at Whitefriars'
http://www.glassmessages.com/index.php/topic,57946.msg328804.html#msg328804

This appears to contradict what Mark Hill said in his book (quotes earlier).

m

Offline flying free

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Re: Help please with Mdina Chalice signature........
« Reply #28 on: October 21, 2014, 01:31:23 PM »
see post above and...
according to What ho's post it appears Ettore left Whitefriars in September 1969 and according to Mark Hill's book joined Mdina in October 1969.
He died in 1971. 
If this comment
'Ettore was not a highly skilled glassblower and was his father's servitor whilst at Whitefriars'
is correct, then does two years give him enough time to become highly skilled enough to blow the Chalice and therefore sign it?

Or was he in fact as Mark Hill described in his book, a trained and experienced glassblower and therefore does that lend more credence to him being able to blow and execute the Chalice in the opening post?
m

Offline flying free

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Re: Help please with Mdina Chalice signature........
« Reply #29 on: October 21, 2014, 01:41:16 PM »
'I like your point, m. that; "would this pawmark be consistent with the period in which the piece was made?" and I would say no. Absolutely not. I don't like the way it's written in the "wrong" place,... '

With ref your point on the position of the sig on the op's goblet Sue, every signed goblet and chalice I've managed to find has been signed around the edge of the rim of the foot whether by Michael Harris or otherwise later pieces.
m

 

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