I’ll admit that the inspiration for today’s projects came about while listening to the swing jazz trio of Duke Ellington, Charlie Mingus, and Max Roach on a track called “Very Special”. The old jam has that dated, yet fetching early 1960s vibe.
At the time, I was seated in the living room, mesmerized by the light shining through a cluster of vintage swung vases displayed in front of a window. Voilà! The combination idea flipped on like a switch. Swung vases, swing jazz, and trios.
Although the idea of glassblowers swinging glass as a technique started in the late 1800s, the technique reached its zenith in the mid 20th century. The vases were made and sold new through the 1970s.
Swung vases are formed when the artisan uses a special tool to support the “gather” of glass at the end of the blow pipe. The molten, partially blown glass is then manually swung in a circular motion to elongate the piece. This human-controlled motion ensures that each finished vase is somewhat unique.
The power, punch, and sophistication of the jazz trio comes through the orange-colored Viking Art Glass swung vase with its three pronged base and three round-edged sides. The rich sound quality of the music is reflected in the subtle blooms and three-branched fern.