News-Antique.com - Aug 10,2009 - What gives value to an item? Rarity? Beauty? Workmanship? History? All these things, and something more – a genuine affection for the item. For the true collector, the person who purchases to KEEP, not to make a profit and move on, sometimes the heartfelt reason for collecting cannot be explained – we just love it.
My late parents were avid collectors of Lundberg Glass. In the early 1980’s, they often visited the west coast, from Los Angeles to Seattle, and there they discovered Lundberg Glass, in Davenport, California, near Santa Cruz. They’d already seen some of James and Steven Lundberg’s beautiful art deco-style vases, and soon were annual visitors to the studio. Over a twelve-year period, they bought more than 150 pieces of Lundberg Glass, about half of them paperweights, and in addition, my father commissioned a line of art nouveau-style automotive bud vases, in four designs. They collected pieces signed by both James and Steven Lundberg, Chris Buzzini, David and Daniel Salazar, and one unusual piece by Vladimir Richter.
One of the things that collectors love is seeing how an artist’s work evolves over time. Lundberg Studios began with pieces that really recalled Tiffany and other art nouveau styles using iridescent glass, but gradually Steven Lundberg began combining pre-lampworked parts with his torchwork designs for paperweights, creating a major breakthrough in both realism and three-dimensionality.
The Worldweight, one of their most famous designs, features a highly detailed view of the globe created by using a complex powdered glass drawing and several layers of specially formulated glass. I was the lucky recipient of one of these – my parents often gave Lundberg Glass as gifts. Many of their Lundberg pieces are now available for sale online at Art Glass & Collectibles Shop, http://www.tias.com/stores/agcs.
My parents are both gone now, and so are Steven and James Lundberg, although the studio is carried on with Daniel Salazar, under the direction of Rebecca Lundberg. Lundberg Glass has all the requisites of a collectible – rarity (especially the earlier items), great beauty and workmanship, a history in modern glass art including the creation of “California-Style” paperweights with examples of their work in almost every major museum and private glass collection. As well, Lundberg Glass has that final important element. The people who own and collect it, LOVE their Lundberg. They just love it.