This is a beautiful vintage small handblown art glass paperweight, made in Murano, Italy. The clear white glass paperweight has a faceted surface. Inside of the glass, there are white, purple, red, and yellow trumpet flowers that have needle-like stems and that are attached to a blue-mass base. The Bullicante glassmaking technique, which was made famous during the 1930s and is often seen on Murano glass, is evident from the many tiny bubbles on the blue-mass base and the larger bubble that is in the center of each flower. This paperweight has a polished pontil mark, on its underside. It is in the style of paperweights that were made (beginning in the 1950s) by famed Murano glassmaker Fratelli Toso, but it is unmarked and I do not know who actually made it.
By the 13th Century, glassmaking in Venice, Italy was a major industry. Near the end of that century, skilled glassmakers were banished from the city of Venice and compelled to live and work on the nearby island of Murano, because of the fires that their factory furnaces had often caused in the Venice and to prevent others from learning their glassblowing “secrets”. They were not allowed to leave the island, without a special pass. The middle of the 19th Century was a time of much innovation for Murano glass artisans, but the post-war decades of the 1950s and 1960s was their most glorious period. Hand-blown glass works, including paperweights, bowls, vases, goblets, and other decorative objects were produced. They were thick, had textured surfaces, were highly colorful (including with witty accents such as polka dots and stripes), had organic, twisted, pulled, and geometric shapes, and made abstract-expressionistic statements that were typical of the Mid Century Modern style. Today, Murano is well-known around the world, for its glassmaking industry and its highly collectible glass works of art.
This paperweight is about 2 1/4 inches (wide) by 2 inches (high).
This item is in very good condition, with no chips, cracks, or scratches.