Friday, September 21, 2007

Our Apartment, An Artful Home

My fiance Paul and I had talked about purchasing original artwork or a collectible item of modest value that we could enjoy in our home and also later pass down to our future children and grandchildren. Our thought was to get something that was decorative but had real worth to it, not just in its pricetag but also in its craftsmanship, aesthetics and the fact that we truly liked it.

We visited Gilmor Glassworks, a fine glass gallery in Dutchess County, New York where Paul's brother lives. It's a gallery and studio located near the Birkshires of Massachusetts where you can view the techniques of creating art glass. It was founded by John and Jan Gilmor in 1977. John is an accomplished molten glassmaker and Jan's background is in the fine and performing arts. The gallery houses stunning and original works of handblown glass. The magnitude of shapes and colors that can be created through handblowing glass is amazing! Gilmor Glassworks carries many interesting items including jewelry, stemware, perfume bottles and vases. It obviously takes great skill and time to compose the various shapes and manipulate the transparencies in each piece. We found that the best way to gain a better grasp of its weight and value was through sight and touch. Once we saw them up close, held them and witnessed the glassmaking process it changed our perception of glassware. The first image here is of the Tortoise Collection from the Gilmor studio. They are currently having their 30th Anniversary sale till the end of September. See more at

We settled on a signed, one of a kind vase of blue, green, mocha and beige because it matched the color scheme of a painting we have on our living room wall and would look great on our mantle. A mantle and fire place in Hells Kitchen, New York is a rare feature but because it's an older building they kept certain architectural details in tact. Fortunately when I moved into this apartment a few years ago it was an inexpensive rental with the option to buy and luckily I had saved some money over the years. I then got a better job, saved up more money and a short time later I bought the apartment. I had furniture from my previous place so the only thing left was to decorate my new place. Within that time frame Paul moved in, so my apartment became our apartment. Now it's not just our apartment, it's our comfy, cozy home which is now furnished with highspeed internet cable, satelite radio, dishwasher, eat in kitchen, backyard view and walk in closet, ok let's just say I got really lucky! It's ours at least till after we're married. Then we'll have to sell, get a bigger place and refurnish, but our beautiful vase will of course come with us and adorn some space in our new home. Now that the vase is ours, it has become a special conversation piece and has helped us to aquire an elevated appreciation for its artform.

To highlight another glass artisan, the second picture above is of vases by Corey Silverman. We don't often view glass as collectibles anymore but the vases pictured here are real keepers. The rich berry color and translucency with swirls of light and dark are stunning. They are handblown and signed by the artist. The art of handblown glass has become somewhat of a lost art with most of the decorative home items nowadays being mass produced overseas. So in its own rite these vases are valuable as well as beautiful. Seeing these stirred something inside of me and reminded me of the beauty of glassware. These vases would be a wise purchase and a wonderful addition to any room in your home.

Small vase: 10"H x 3"D
Large vase: 18"H x 5"D

Large (left) $1725 & s+h: $65

Small (right) $480 & s+h: $20

Set as Shown $2100 & s+h: $85

Berry Smoke Set: Corey Silverman: Art Glass Vases - The Artful Home - art - silverman - artists Stylehive BM 200279 #:200279