About This Artwork


Paperweight, 1845/55

Lily of the Valley, blown glass, factory unknown, set above an opaque white ground covered in translucent red overlaid with radiating white latticinio strands, centered by a thick curved stalk supporting six open flowers, each a five petalled bell-shaped flower with solid yellow center, surmounted by three small white buds, and backed by two large serrated green leaves
Diameter: 8.6 cm (3 3/8 in.)

Arthur Rubloff gift, 1982.1480

Unknown 1234A

Glass paperweights became popular in the mid-19th century when the establishment of a dependable mail service led to an increase in letter writing and a demand for writing products. Lily of the Valleyis one of over 1,400 paperweights in the Art Institute's famous Arthur Rubloff Collection, which documents all periods, designs, and techniques. In this delightful example, glass flowers have been centered under the magnifying dome of lead glass not only to reveal the technical skill with which they were made but also to achieve an illusion of depth.

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