Oswald Haerdtl
Austrian, 1899 - 1959
Lobmeyr Glassworks, manufacturer (Vienna)
Decanter with stopper, c. 1930–1940

H. 12 1/4 x Dia. 4 3/4 in.

Granted permission to open a glass business in Vienna in 1822, Josef Lobmeyr opened his first shop a year later. Consistently producing glasswork of extraordinary quality, the name of Lobmeyr is inextricably linked with the style and development of the Wiener Werkstätte.

When the Werkstätte opened in 1903, its ambitious manifesto declared an earnest effort to put an end to shoddy mass-produced goods and a mindless imitation of old styles. In glasswork much of their output involved a joint collaboration between the designer of the object and the firm which carried out the production, invariably established factories, mainly Bohemian, such as J. & L. Lobmeyr, Loetz and Meyr's Neffe, before being hand-finished in their own workshops by artisans such as Oswald Haerdtl. The particular appeal of Lobmeyr glass is its sheerness, total absence of decoration and fragility. The Werkstätte closed in 1933 but Lobmeyr continued to nurture a close working relationship between art, industry and handicraft. This decanter with stopper (which cleverly functions as a cordial) is a fine example of their purist designs.