Masters of Glass Art

Masters of Glass Art

Exploring the Works of Émile Gallé and André Thuret

French art glass is renowned as an area of collecting where meticulous design and technical ability fuel its attraction. Our July 18 Design sale offers a range of the best in this field.

22 June 2023



Several works by Émile Gallé feature in the sale, including an enormous floor-standing cameo vase. Born in 1846 in the city of Nancy, Gallé was exposed to an emerging glass business started by his father Charles Gallé. The floral designs synonymous with his output are a testament to his education, particularly when he was under the talents of Professor DA Godron, an author of works on French flora.  With an affluent upbringing, Gallé was able to travel and during his time in Germany gained technical understating of glass production while at the Saar glassworks.


Emile Galle (1846-1904), c.1900 (£200-400)

Emile Galle (1846-1904), c.1900 (£200-400)


Émile Gallé took over the family business in 1874. First instructing all workshops to be brought back to Nancy within close proximity of their family home. And thus starting a 30-year career leaving an impact on the art world internationally and becoming synonymous with the École de Nancy.

Despite being less coveted than the aforementioned, André Thuret is a character as impressive and innovative and we are fortunate to offer a piece by this 20th century glass icon. Born at the tail-end of the 19th century, he too was raised in a wealthy household allowing him to earn two degrees by the age of 25.


Émile Gallé (1846-1904), a floorstanding cameo glass vase (£2,000-4,000)

Émile Gallé (1846-1904), a floorstanding cameo glass vase (£2,000-4,000)


His work can be considered as ‘early studio glass’ in the same vein as Maurice Marinot’s output. Experimenting with adding metallic inclusions and bubbles to his designs, it heavily contrasted with the more standard factory output of the time, and these decorative devices would not become prominent again until the explosion of studio glass in the late 1960s and 1970s.

His attention to detail and constant pursuit of new scientific discoveries through glassmaking has cemented his name in the development of art glass in the 20th century.



Emile Galle (1846-1904), a cameo glass vase, c.1900 (£300-500)

Emile Galle (1846-1904), a cameo glass vase, c.1900 (£300-500)


After looking at two individuals, it seems only fair to focus on a factory – Cristallerie de Pantin. While diminutive in size, the landscape cameo bowl displays the cameo glass art in all its glory. Situated close to Paris, Pantin is more widely known in the glass world for its paperweight production, despite any of their paperweight production being signed. Like many French and Continental firms, the cameo signature does not always indicate which glasshouse is responsible for the work. In this instance, works signed ‘de Vez’ are designed by Camille Trutié de Varreux and produced by the Pantin glassworks.



A French Cristallerie de Patin 'DeVez' landscape cameo glass bowl (£300-500)

A French Cristallerie de Patin 'DeVez' landscape cameo glass bowl (£300-500)


Whether it be an established market you are hoping to tap into such as Gallé’s cameo works, or something off the beaten track such as a unique piece by the likes of Thuret, the Design sale features pieces for all tastes.


Tuesday 18 July | 10am | 01279 817778




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