Orrefors Art Glass – Know the High Valued Artists

Daryle Lambert’s 31 Club Blog

7″ High Orrefors Vase: Edvin Öhrström’s “Graal” with Portraits of a Man & Woman, 1941 is offered at FreeFormUsa.com at $18,500

Have you ever assumed you knew something, only to later discover how mistaken you were? This doesn’t happen to me often but it has happened in the last few months. I figured that I was somewhat knowledgeable on most good glass produced in the last hundred years, however, this proved to be false. Orrefors was a name I was familiar with but had always thought it was too contemporary for me. How wrong I was.

The Orrefors Company was founded in 1898 in the province of Samaaland Sweden. It was fortunate to have some of the best glass masters to be found anywhere, and they produced marvelous bowls and vases. Some of the best known artists to work at the Orrefors Company were Edvard Hald, Vicke Lindstrand, and Nils Landberg. There never has been finer glass workers than these artists, and most of the finer pieces are signed “Orrefors” along with the name of the artist or his initials.

I don’t have a current book on Orrefors, but after writing this Blog, you can be assured that I will order The Best of Modern Swedish Art Glass: Orrefors and Kosta 1930-1970. This book has a price guide, too.

I did find some information on the company in my book by Victor Arwas, Glass Art Nouveau to Art Deco, and this proved helpful. You must be asking yourself why this particular company caught my eye. The easy and quick answer to this question is the price that Orrefors’ better pieces bring in the market place. This is just the kind of item that we’re searching for. The ones that few people know much about. And, when you find the right piece, the rewards can be quite substantial.

Here are just a few of the prices from Kovels Price Guide to give you a little taste of what’s out there. Vicke Lindstrand did a vase featuring a shark killer, depicting a nude man diving, carrying a knife. This 12 ½ inch tall vase could have a value approaching $15,000 or more. Other Orrefors vases, one depicting a Pearl Diver, as well as one of an Oriental Princess both list at over $4,000. This isn’t bad considering they both are only 8 inches tall.

Orrefors still produces glass today, and that is where I got confused. The modern pieces bring very little money, usually. These aren’t the pieces we’re searching for. You should definitely do your homework on this fantastic glass.

I learned a very valuable lesson with regard to Orrefors. Never judge all things about a particular subject with the limited knowledge that you’ve gained until you have done a complete study of it. I broke this rule. You see, I have seen hundreds, if not thousands of pieces of Orrefors. Usually it has been extremely inexpensive, so I assumed all Orrefors pieces were inexpensive. Boy, what a mistake I’ve been making. But, for me, the worst thing is considering how much money I might have walked away from. I’ll not be making that mistake again.

Links for Other Recommended Glass Books:

Orrefors: A Century of Swedish Glassmaking

Miller’s 20th-Century Glass: Over 2000 Items – Identified – Valued

Miller’s Art Glass: How to Compare & Value


10 Responses

  1. Hi Daryle,
    I just want you to know that it is an article about Edvin Öhrström here: http://www.worldartglass.com/index.asp?mc=art2

    It is written by Bill Geary.
    Best regards

  2. The Swedish art glass market is like the stock market. In the middle 1980’s two wealthy families competed to build a great Swedish glass collection. A green vase, ariel by Edvin Öhrström went for about $86,000. In 1989 a Bacchus Bowl by Simon Gate went for $65,000 at Bukowskis. The market crashed in 1992 with the economic turn down in Sweden. The market has been very soft but is now starting to rebound.
    You might want to check my book. “Scandinavian Glass – Creative Energies” published by Schiffer Publishing Ltd. It also contains my calculation of fair market value.

    William L. Geary

  3. Ok Thank you for listening to me.

  4. Thanks for you resources.

  5. I found a signed very heavy orrefors bowl in a thrift shop and was trying to research same. Orrefors EL 5098-14 is etched on the bottom any thoughts on how I can find information? Thanks

  6. Hello,

    Did you ever find out which artist EL stood for? We have VERY heavy signed piece of Orrefors with the same EL initials on it!

    Thank you!
    Heather Neale

  7. Thank Youhttp://www.antiques-collectibles.us

  8. yummmmy…… thanks for ur tips i’d love to follow you.anyway happy new year ~~~~~~~~

  9. I have a graal vase “Cairo”, signed by Gunnar Cyren. Model 977872, limited edition, 1990. How can I find today’s value?


  10. I have several Lindstrand vases.I just bought (cheap) a vase I thought was his but when I looked at the mark with a loupe I saw it wasn’t a Lindstrand. I have been all over the internet trying to ID the mark-no luck. If someone wants to try, please email me and I will send a picture of the mark. Thanks.

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