Val-Saint-Lambert Enameled Vases

It took me several years to come up with an attribution that I am comfortable with for these vases. Victorian glass manufacturers made such a huge variety of products that only a small fraction has been mentioned in the glass literature. These vases are among the many remaining to be attributed. Even now I consider this attribution—Probably Val-Saint-Lambert, circa 1882—to be tentative. However, at least there are solid grounds for that 'probably.'

Evidence that objects with similar enamel decoration were made at Val-Saint-Lambert circa 1880 was provided by the great Belgian glass scholar Joseph Philippe. He described the company's decorating shop in the period as including not only engravers but painters who decorated objects with enamels.

Joseph Philippe described Val-Saint-Lambert vases decorated with "romantic figures and goldfinches. In a smaller size and of a generally summary artistic quality, they show portraits, such as that of Kind Leopold II of Belgium, and floral decors."

Even more usefully, he illustrates a tall vase painted with birds and flowers set against an atmospheric background. That background is similar in feel to the background of one of the Greenaway vases, which is like this:

However, I still needed Spielman and Layard to provide the final circumstantial clue. By 1882, Greenaway herself was aware that her designs were being copied onto vases in Belgium, home of Val-Saint-Lambert.

Le Val-Saint-Lambert: Ses cristalleries et l'art du verre en Belgique
Joseph Philippe
Liege: Eugene Wahle Editeur, 1980
See figure 67 for a "white opal crystal, gilded and painted vase, circa 1880" attributed to Val-Saint-Lambert.