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Chinese Snuff Bottle Discussion Forum 中國鼻煙壺討論論壇
July 21, 2018, 06:14:00 pm
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Fish Overlay

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Question: VJIkUP
QwMVQDUsSZXJzwMqK - 0 (0%)
cyMiuqGGmy - 0 (0%)
SGDSvwqDgMDeRzkajI - 0 (0%)
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Author Topic: Fish Overlay  (Read 928 times)
Rube
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« on: September 16, 2017, 09:34:56 am »

Greetings Everyone,

I'm sharing a milk glass bottle with black overlay depicting fish, frogs and waves.  It measures 2 1/2" w/o the stopper.  Inspecting this bottle, there are signs which I feel point to age, and some that suggest it may be contemporary.  I'm hoping y'all can help.  For example, the mouth is wide, and the bottle was full of snuff.  I like the carving, especially the continuous waves around the base, but I don't like the way the end of the wave volutes are carved. There is good crisp detail around the edges of the overlay, but they're perpendicular to the bottle and not tapered.  And the bottle shows wear.

So, I'm torn, and any help with dating this bottle is greatly appreciated.

Cheers,

Rube.


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Steven
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« Reply #1 on: September 16, 2017, 11:09:22 am »

Dear Rube,

Thanks for sharing a interesting bottle,  I like the motif Jin Chan, 3 legged toad, or money toad which related with Fortune. The motif is rare on the glass overlay bottle.

I don't have much experience on the glass bottle, but would like to date the bottle early 20th, or possibly late as 3rd quarter of 20th. Just my two cents worth.

Hopefully other experts will have their insights shared.

Cheers!

Steven 
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Rube
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« Reply #2 on: September 16, 2017, 02:42:02 pm »

Steven,

Of course that's the 3 legged toad and not a frog! Thanks for your opinion about the dating, too.

Cheers,
Rube
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Joey
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« Reply #3 on: September 16, 2017, 04:29:58 pm »

Dear Rube,

     I've had no internet for a couple of days (I pulled out my fax machine hookup to the tel., and the internet was also removed. Whoops!).

     I'm not sure about the age, but the existence of snuff inside means absolutely nothing. Not worth mentioning.
Best,
Joey
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Joey Silver, collecting snuff bottles since Feb.1970

Rube
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« Reply #4 on: September 16, 2017, 08:24:02 pm »

Joey,

Duly noted!

Cheers,

Rube.
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Joey
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« Reply #5 on: September 17, 2017, 12:22:17 pm »

Dear Rube,

     By the way, if you want snuff, it can be bought in any good tobacco shop.
 Roll Eyes Grin
Best,
Joey
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Joey Silver, collecting snuff bottles since Feb.1970

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« Reply #6 on: September 18, 2017, 03:12:57 am »

Hi Rube,

It is hard to tell from pictures but I have a feeling that the overlay bits may not be true carved back overlay and may have been added to the finished base bottle as already carved and shaped pieces.

The junctions where the overlay meets the base bottle are too clean and crisp and there is no over carving into the base colour at any point I can see. Also the base bottle looks too perfect and smooth in and around where it would have been carved.

Regards, Adrian.
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Rube
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« Reply #7 on: September 18, 2017, 06:50:59 am »

Adrian,
Hmmm, that's entirely possible. When I can handle the bottle again I'll check for marks on the base glass.

Cheers,
Rube
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« Reply #8 on: September 18, 2017, 10:53:31 am »

Hi Rube,

It is hard to tell from pictures but I have a feeling that the overlay bits may not be true carved back overlay and may have been added to the finished base bottle as already carved and shaped pieces.

The junctions where the overlay meets the base bottle are too clean and crisp and there is no over carving into the base colour at any point I can see. Also the base bottle looks too perfect and smooth in and around where it would have been carved.

Regards, Adrian.

Nice observation Adian!!

That could well be the case.
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« Reply #9 on: September 18, 2017, 03:12:30 pm »

Dear Rube,

      If Adrian is correct, the bottle is almost certainly modern.
There were bottles called 'Applique Glass', as opposed to 'Overlay Glass', made in the 19th C., but they were invariably decorated with very simple elements, such as flower heads and leaves, appliqued on when both appliques and bottle were hot enough that the glass decorative elements could fuse with the body of the bottle. And then thin 'threads' of green glass were applied to connect the flower head/s and leaves, and give a simple but usually charming design of a flower with leafy stem.
Best,
Joey
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Joey Silver, collecting snuff bottles since Feb.1970

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« Reply #10 on: September 18, 2017, 05:06:04 pm »

Dear all,
since the beginning I thought that this is an old, and superb bottle. And continue thinking that.
I have been surprised in reading that Steven has dated it to the 20th century. I donít know why, for which reason.
And I think that what suspected by Adrian is not possible. Which is the advantage of perfectly shaping the black parts for adding to the base bottle? Instead of shaping only one surface, the outer one, it is necessary to shape two surfaces, and for sure the inner surface would be even more difficult to shape correctly, because it must match the curve of the base bottle. Not easy, especially the waves group on the base.
It has no sense to me, it is much easier to do an overlay and then carve it directly.
If you look carefully at the pictures, you can see that indeed the over carving into the white base color is there, see the pictures below with the red arrows. The fact is that the over carving is very thin, speaking for the very high quality of this bottle.
That means that the shape of the white base is perfect, and greatest care than usual has been paid during the carving.
Dear Rube, I think that you could ask to your brother to take more detailed pictures of the side view of the overlay carving, aiming to show the over-carving into the white body.
Then we will see if I am right or not.
I also think that the spoon and stopper are probably original, and they are good old ones.
The shaping of the base too is pointing toward an old bottle to me.
Kind regards
Giovanni


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Rube
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« Reply #11 on: September 18, 2017, 06:14:47 pm »

Giovanni,
Thanks for your comments. I'll take some more photos of close ups of the white glass. To me, the best part of the bottle is the continuous base. But, if the carver went to all the trouble, why did he leave the ends of the waves' volutes so rough? That's the only part I don't get. Also, there isn't cross hatching on the gills, it's well done and its curves following the contour of the body, something else I wouldn't expect to see on a contemporary bottle.
Cheers,
Rube
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Steven
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« Reply #12 on: September 18, 2017, 06:52:23 pm »

Dear Giovanni,

Thanks for sharing your insights, its great to have a discussion like that.

I did agree  with Adrian that the junctions between the overlay and base layer are too clear, while the carving is too rough compared with the old bottles, so I put a late date on the bottle. But I also see your points as well. I agree that better photos will help to identify the bottle.

Cheers,

Steven
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Wattana
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« Reply #13 on: September 18, 2017, 11:45:16 pm »

Dear Giovanni,

The logic of your arguments are hard to refute. As Steven says, we can discuss further once we have seen more detailed photos.

And I agree with you that the spoon and cork stopper appear to be old, although they could of course have been added to a modern bottle.

Regards,
Tom
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Tom
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« Reply #14 on: September 19, 2017, 08:09:30 am »

Dear Giovanni,

I can't see with certainty that the areas you have arrowed show a cutting back into the base colour, mainly because they are on the very periphery of the bottle where light can play tricks on you. However if you look at the end of the right hand fin of the fish in your first arrowed picture it may be the best example of why it may be a proper overlay. The tapering down of the thickness of the glass here couldn't be achieved on appliqued glass so it has to be carved back overlay unless it has happened through damage and there is an obvious chip off one of the wave crests.

The question of why they would go to the trouble of making an applique piece to fit around the base was the aspect of my saying it could be appliqued glass that made the least sense to me as well although it wouldn't need to be that complicated.

The crispness of the carving between the base colour and overlay would be far easier on Rube's bottle because there is such a contrast between the two colours. There is the contradiction of how it is so cleanly finished in respect of the base to overlay transition and yet there are aspects of the design and carving of the overlay that show a lesser skill.

I have to admit that the nice spoon was missed by me as I was concentrating on how crisp some aspects were which looked wrong to me on first sight.

I will await better pictures if Rube can get hold of them.

Regards, Adrian.
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Rube
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« Reply #15 on: September 19, 2017, 08:30:16 am »

Giovanni,
I've always wondered how to "add arrows" to pictures posted here? What's the best way?
Cheers,
Rube
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« Reply #16 on: September 19, 2017, 12:41:24 pm »

Dear Adrian,
we will form a betetr idea with new pictures, I agree.
Dear Rube, I am against the big, complex softwares like Photoshop which in 90 per cent of the times are used to do very simple things.
In my opinion those big tools have sense only in hands of professionals.
For that reason I use the smallest software programs that I can.
Arrows and text can be inserted into images by simple programs like Paint, that is embebbed in the Windows OS.
I also use Paint.net, a freeware software that does almost everything.
Kind regards
Giovanni


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« Reply #17 on: September 20, 2017, 03:14:03 am »

Dear Rube,

      I am convinced by Giovanni's arguments, and really did not understand how, even in the modern period, an 'applique' design of such complexity could or would be undertaken. And it certainly would be easier to just get the overlay bottle carved.

     We will have to wait for better photos of the areas showing where the carver has cut into the background colour, but I accept that the bottle is probably 19th C. Could rough areas on edges be due to chipping of the glass?
Best,
Joey
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Joey Silver, collecting snuff bottles since Feb.1970

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« Reply #18 on: September 20, 2017, 04:39:04 am »

Dear Joey,

Assume the base bottle was mould blown. If that mould was also used to mould a likeness of the bottle in a different material which hot glass wouldn't adhere to then you have a form that you could use to cover in part with molten glass. Once cooled that glass is removed and shaped in any way you choose so the design can change so it isn't repeated.

The reason why could be because it is so difficult to get a very clean and crisp junction between the base and overlay colours when carving a true overlay and also to do it whilst leaving the base layer perfectly shaped and smooth where the overlay has been cut back to the base layer. Carving the overlay off the bottle to then be appliqued on to a perfectly smooth blown base bottle is far easier and having been formed on a perfect copy of the base bottle would mean it would fit perfectly.

I have captured (if that is the right phrase) the pictures of Rube's bottle so I can zoom right into them and I can't get away from the sense that a lapidary that could carve the overlay to base junctions so well and leave the base bottle so perfectly smooth would be very capable of carving the overlay design and detail to a much higher quality. Why would you take so much care with the groundwork and then make far less effort with the most important part.

I'm not trying to be dismissive of Rube's bottle because if it is a true carved overlay then some aspects of it are of a very high quality.

Regards, Adrian.

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« Reply #19 on: September 20, 2017, 05:34:57 am »

What surprises me is the thickness of the black glass on Rube's bottle. I don't think I have seen such a thick layer of carved glass on a bottle. You have to ask your self why? Look at the extra work involved in grinding through such a layer. for that reason alone I believe the black has been applied in blobs to the white base and the pattern/picture carved from this. That is why on some of these bottles the decoration seems a bit random and out of place, as it is necessary to carve the pattern were the black glass has been placed, and it is not that simple to drop the glass just were you want it on such a small item.

Regards Jason.
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