Kosta Boda vase has a highly recognizable face
Published: Saturday, December 29, 2012 at 6:01 a.m.
Last Modified: Friday, December 28, 2012 at 12:09 p.m.
Q: We recently received this Kosta Boda vase as a gift. I have been unable to find any information on it and would appreciate any information you can give me, plus its value. I really enjoy your column.
D.V., Silver Springs
A: Swedish Kosta Boda Art Glass is recognized worldwide for decorative 20th century modern glass. The collecting marketplace continues to grow as we move further away from the 20th century. Kosta Boda glass, located in the Swedish province Smaland, has been in production since the 18th century. The artist signature on your vase is Ulrica Hydman-Vallien. She was born in 1938, and is considered one of the best-known Swedish glass artists. The title of your vase is "Open Minds." It was made in several versions and is one of the artist's recognized titles. Current potential dollar value is $250 to $500.
Q: My name is Karen, and I live in New Bedford, Mass. I think I've been an elderly lady since I was 4 years old, in that I've always loved things that are ancient or antique, and have saved some things from my childhood that were already antiques.
One of my favorite belongings is an old desk that I got from an "aunt" (not really, but that is what we called any woman who was part of our lives who was an adult). Anyway, back in 1969 or so, they were closing their awning shop they had operated for many years in New Bedford. I wish I would have had more foresight, but I was only 5. The desk they used for many years, supposedly, came from the Seamens' Bethel in New Bedford, which was a place of worship and a safe haven for fishermen when they came ashore back in the whaling days. They still use the Bethel for baptisms and small wedding ceremonies.
It was painted a cranberry color when we got it way back then, which was not the original color. My mother stripped all the paint off with the intention of staining it, but just left it in the basement for years until I rescued it, and will keep it until the day I die. I have wanted this desk since I was 5, and it took until I was 30 or so to get possession of it. I would have left the cranberry paint until I knew for sure. It had been that way since at least the 1950s. I am not sure if they painted it at the awning store, or the Bethel. I was wondering if you have ever seen another desk like this one, as I have not.
It seems like you would know, and I appreciate your time. The desktop portion lifts up. I am wondering if it was made around here or shipped from England with the settlers.
A: I think your desk was made in America sometime during the first two or three decades of the 20th century. The type first appeared in England during the late 18th century. They are called kneehole pedestal desks. Originally, they were made in three separate sections, the top and two pedestals left and right with drawers in each. The desk could be easily moved by simply lifting the top portion of the two pedestals. The similar desks made in the 20th century in America were generally of one piece. Potential dollar value is $150 to $300.
John Sikorski is an Ocala antiques dealer. He hosts a call-in radio show, "Sikorski's Attic,'' on WUFT-FM (89.1 FM). It can be heard each Saturday from noon to 1 p.m. Send your questions to Sikorski's Attic, c/o The Gainesville Sun, 2700 SW 13th St., Gainesville, FL 32608-2015; or email firstname.lastname@example.org.