Verlys of America Vases

Nov 13, 2023 | Museum Monday Treasures

Today’s Museum Monday treasure from the Museum of American Glass in WV is a pair of vases made by the Verlys of America division of the Holophane Glass Company in Newark, Ohio. Originally Holophane issued glassware for the American market made from the original French Verlys moulds, but by the 1940s had begun creating brand new designs from American artists. These Four Seasons vases were designed by Carl Schmitz, the first one featuring autumn on one side and spring on the other. The companion vase has summer on one side and winter on the other.

Although he was born in Alsace-Lorraine, Schmidt’s career was as an American sculptor. When the Capitol building was given a facelift in 1940, Schmitz oversaw the reconstruction of some of the marble statuary. This was the same year that his Four Seasons vases were issued by Verlys, with the designs patented the following year.

After Holophane ceased production of Verlys, the moulds were obtained by Fenton, who reissued a number of the pieces in the pattern. MAGWV is fortune to have an example of the summer-winter vase in Fenton’s Favrene, made in 2006.

Schmitz also design the large Girl with Lamb and Ewe bowl (often referred to as Mary and Her Lamb), an Americana console set, and a Greek Horse smoking set, among other items issued by Verlys. These were all advertised widely in the 1940s, as can be documented from our archives.

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