Time Study for Vase with Nude

Object Name: 
Time Study for Vase with Nude

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Object Name: 
Time Study for Vase with Nude
Accession Number: 
Overall H: 17.6 cm, W: 19.8 cm, D: 5 cm
On Display
designed in 1938
made about 1938-1939
Credit Line: 
Gift of the Design Department, Steuben Glass, A Division of Corning, Incorporated
Web Description: 
Salvador Dalí was a renowned and controversial Spanish painter, sculptor, and printmaker. He moved to Paris, where, in the 1920s, he joined the Surrealists. His art works depict a dreamlike world in which everyday objects are oddly juxtaposed or combined with images from the subconscious. In January 1940, Steuben Glass Inc. mounted an exhibition in New York City where they unveiled “The Collection of Designs in Glass by Twenty-seven Contemporary Artists.” Dalí was one of the featured twenty-seven artists. This object is a time study produced by Steuben as part of the design process to create Dalí’s vase for the Twenty-seven Contemporary Artists series. The time study is inscribed “STONEWHEEL 80 HR.” The inscription indicates that the finished product took 80 hours of engraving to complete and was engraved with a stone wheel. The texture received from the stone wheel is atypical for Steuben Glass. Although stone wheels were used, as is the case here, Steuben Glass more often employed a copper wheel for engraving, which yields a smoother and brighter surface. In order to work through the design of an object, the employees of Steuben Glass often created studies before creating a finished product. It can be challenging to translate a drawing into an engraved design on glass. Some studies allowed for back and forth conversations between the artist/designer and engraver while they worked through the process of transferring a design to glass. The artist/designer could review the sample and let the engraver know, for example, if an engraved area needed to be altered. Other studies were created to calculate the number of hours needed to complete the final work, which also helped the company determine the price for finished objects. Engravers also used studies as a reference when creating multiple works in an edition. The study wasn’t necessarily a guide for line work, but was an important tool to help achieve the correct depth, polish, value, and tonality of the engraving. This practice helped ensure a consistent aesthetic across all examples of a given design.
Twenty-seven Contemporary Artists
Steuben Glass, Inc., Source
Engraved on one side This inscription refers to the number of hours it took to complete the engraving.
Primary Description: 
Time Study for Vase with Nude from the Steuben series "Twenty-Seven Contemporary Artists". Colorless glass; molded, polished, stone-wheel engraved. Colorless rectangle of glass with deep engraving of a female figure.
Flawless Until the End (2012-01) illustrated, p. 50;