L.H. Selman, Ltd.’s  Summer 2022, 81st Glass Paperweight Auction, featuring 360 lots, antique and modern, as well as choice paperweight-related objects. Initial bidding begins June 27th at 9am, with competitive bidding beginning July 12th.

The auction is fully online, hosted on our AUCTION WEBSITE. A web friendly digital e-catalog can be viewed above, while a printed copy of the catalog is for sale at PRINT-CATALOG. For those of you who have enjoyed watching spin videos of featured pieces, they can be accessed via our YouTube Channel. If you see something to your liking, please do not fail to place an initial bid in order to ensure that you have a position in the competitive bidding that follows in the second half of the auction. Competitive bidding concludes after each lot closes, whereby the Buy-At-Reserve stage commences offering all unsold lots at their reserve prices.

If you’re new to our auctions, or if you would just like a refresher, we recently put together a video explaining the auction process. So we encourage you to watch for a full explanation of our unique slow close auctions, including the different stages, rules and processes. And please call us at (312) 583-1177 if you have any questions

We recommend that you give the catalog’s Conditions of Sale a careful examination for a full understanding of the protocols. A key for condition statements can be found in the Conditions of Sale page in the catalog. Please call the gallery with any questions about these changes or the auction format, and don’t forget, we’re always happy to send additional images, videos or condition reports upon request.

We are currently open to visit by appointment only, so please get in touch to schedule a time to see every lot in person at our gallery in Chicago, 410 S. Michigan Ave., suite 207. If you prefer to place any or all bids by phone, or have any questions, just give us a call at 1-800-538-0766.

Auction 81 Show reel


For those of you who have enjoyed watching spin videos of featured pieces, they can be accessed via our YouTube Channel. Or look for a link in the description of a lot indicating a video has been provided.


Arrive here looking for the time/date/link-to information on the Summer Auction? CLICK HERE

If you haven’t seen the video yet, click play below, it’s worth it!

 

OKAY – LIKE WE AGREED TO, LAST TIME—I AM, THIS TIME AROUND, WAXING POETIC ABOUT LOT 1 AND THEN I’LL JUST TEASE YOU ABOUT THE REST BECAUSE YOU ALL HAVE LIVES OUTSIDE OF PAPERWEIGHT COLLECTING.  (ALTHOUGH WE WOULD ALL AGREE THAT, THAT OUTSIDE TIME ISN’T NEARLY AS IMPORTANT.)

 

Lot 1. Extremely rare antique Mount Washington dimensional fruit bouquet with flowers magnum paperweight.

THE WEIGHT OF HISTORY WRAPPED IN A BEACH TOWEL !

Picture this; late 1960s Atlanta.  The Milwaukee Braves have arrived to put the city on the Major League Baseball map.  The Atlanta-based Coca-Cola Company (with an eponymously named product originally dubbed “a brain tonic and intellectual beverage”) has conquered the market, thanks to following troops throughout the world during the Second World War.  Plans are afoot to vastly expand the airport on the way to making the city, “the Aviation Center of the South.”  In other words, Atlanta has just finally recovered from General Sherman’s criminally sloppy visit. But if you think all that is exciting, keep listening. It gets better.

It is 1968-69 and paperweight dealer Larry Engle works his booth at the DS Clark Antique Show, as is his custom. Larry took part in the professional circuit of antique shows for 52 years before retiring not long ago. He lives in central Florida, but displays his wares in Atlanta three times a year as part of that circuit.

A curious woman has been visiting Larry’s table and examining his weights, over the last year and a half. She would occasionally point to certain artworks and say that she owned similar pieces, but she would never buy anything. Larry doesn’t know what to make of her and finally says, “Well, if I can’t sell you anything, surely you must have something that you would sell to me?” She pauses and says maybe he would like to see a rare Mount Washington. Flash forward one day.  She reappears and brings something large, wrapped very casually in a beach towel, to his table. She is with a man this time and he tries to convince her to keep the wrapped object.  Engle gets the sense they’re married and that the man either is or was a soldier.  She says she was living in France during the Second World War, and that is where she came to possess the paperweights she owns.  Engle had been expecting little when he saw a beach towel, and he is shocked to see the extremely rare Mount Washington fruit bouquet with flowers magnum. It is breathtaking—a nineteenth century, dynamically dimensional creation of fruits, flowers and leaves—robustly sculpted, and filled with passionate color and fearless fecundity.  This glass sculpture emanates beauty, strength and energy.

Larry picks his jaw back up from the floor and they strike a deal. The woman insists that he makes out the check simply to “CASH.” He never sees her again.

Of course, you already know that weight is our Lot #1.

And now it is up to you, the perspicacious and successful bidder, to write the next chapter in the history of this mysterious landmark artwork that somehow made its way east over the Pond and back again, with the greatest conflagration in history as a backdrop.  Top THAT during your curatorship of this weight!  We won’t even get into the legendary conclusion of this weight’s journey, during the Paperweight Collectors Association Convention at the Corning Museum, where two gargantuan collectors vied for the treasure to a photo-finish.

What did you all say?  You have a few more minutes? Okay, if you insist…. So, it turns out that Larry Engle never intended to sell this weight.  At least he made no attempt to do so for the next two decades following his purchase.  His wife Pat saw things a little differently, and there were numerous discussions with her about selling the treasure. To Larry, this landmark paperweight was magical, almost a family member, and thankfully he couldn’t see our look of horror over the phone as he impishly related having once tossed the weight a full 10 feet to Melissa, his young teenage daughter, chiding her not to drop it. He did admit afterward that they were in the backyard on grass and soil, and yes – she caught it.

Flash forward to 1987.  Larry prepares for the big PCA show, which is being held that year at the venerable Corning Museum.  Larry Engle thought he’d left the Mount Washington securely in the family bank deposit box.  He had shown photographs of the weight around to some of his antique clients for information and the pleasure of shared appreciation. So, when collectors Emanuel (Manny) Lacher and Julius Tarshis came to the booth asking if Larry had finally brought it this time, he said no. And as he said no, Pat said “Oh no, actually, it’s right here!”

Yes, horrified readers, Pat had retrieved the Mount Washington from the bank and sequestered it with the Corning-bound inventory. Outnumbered 100 to 1 by Pat and daughter Melissa – Larry Engle finally gives in.  It is now for sale.

Larry names a price, an amount that is intended to allow him to keep the magnificent paperweight. The two heavyweight collectors (get it?)  retired to their corners and brooded, sometimes revisiting Larry’s booth.  Larry Selman had his booth directly across the aisle and told Larry Engle he would never sell the weight at that price.  Larry smiled and replied, “I don’t care, I’m happy keeping it!”

The afternoon wore on. Then finally, Manny Lacher, was walking away from Larry’s booth to again confer with his wife about meeting the retail price, when he saw his collecting nemesis, Julius Tarshis, coming up the aisle toward Engle’s booth.  Larry says Manny Lacher stopped suddenly, pivoted and sped quickly back to complete the sale at full retail minus a modest, last minute discount. We think Larry wanted to avoid having a grown man crying in the aisle.  What a good guy.

And as we said above – “And now it is up to you to write the next chapter…!”

Did I mention that the weight is sensuous and stunning?  Please examine Marty’s excellent spin videos and read Penelope’s wonderful description of this American masterpiece in glass. And fix bayonets for the bidding! Also remember – there’s no crying in paperweights.

At the end of the interview, I asked Larry, “Looking back, you must feel good about having made the sale that day?”

“Well…yes” he conceded, “But I feel like I lost a friend!”

I said, “You mean the losing collector would no longer talk to you?”

NO,” he stressed, sounding like I hadn’t been listening earlier.

“I Mean the WEIGHT!

What a Wondrous Elixir is the Fine Art of Glass Paperweights…!

Well, We’re keeping our word and avoiding the white paper treatment for each and every lot item.  But just call me to discuss anything that intrigues you. Okay, on to more bite-size reflections as promised…

 

Lot 2. Outstanding and extremely rare antique Clichy three flower bouquet paperweight.

PERFECTION, ANYONE?

This is a sublimely successful artwork with a small cluster of clematis blooms, so very carefully rendered that they look as though if you chipped them out of the glass and put them in water, they would keep growing! Seriously! The pistils and stamens are flawlessly executed.  Ask for close-ups!

This is world-class artistic expression joined to world-class craftsmanship giving a TED Talk in fine glass sculpture.  Don’t know TED?  Call me.

 

Lot 3. Antique English, attributed to Bacchus, scattered millefiori on sodden snow ground paperweight

HYPNAGOGIA IN GLASS?

This paperweight should be part and parcel of every therapeutic hypnotist’s bag of magic tricks.  Gloriously idiosyncratic canes bob and weave around, leaving vapor trails  in a seductively cloudy dream bath.  Some of the lusciously colored canes are reaching the surface while others are still emerging from their oneiric slumber. (No, actually, I didn’t have to look that spelling up.)  A basket of emerald staves girdles from beneath and serves as an incredibly elegant futon while you lay back and regress!

 

Lot 4. Rare antique Clichy scattered millefiori and roses magnum paperweight.

LOOKING DOWN UPON A CELESTIAL MAP OF GLASS!

Wow!  For those of you who prefer the crisp and bright light of day to the languid dreamscape of the prior discussion, this weight is the brass ring, and a magnum to boot! Crisply executed (yes, I needed that word twice) and brilliantly colorful, these gorgeously executed canes appear as laser-cut holograms happily floating mid-air around the most regal Clichy rose in memory. What? It won’t fit on your display shelf?  Move the television into the hallway and use the stand.  This is healthier for your eyes, anyway.

 

Lot 6. Very rare antique Sandwich Glass Company basket of pink and white roses paperweight.

YANKEE  POWER

This unusual but accomplished weight has a real devil-may-care, raw and fearless sensibility.  Very early American. The design itself has a rough impressionism that nonetheless results in a satisfyingly executed basket with rows of emerald, geometric abstract shapes topped by swirling flowers that resemble bits of tasty cake pastry applied with a palette knife.  A refreshing approach to a paperweight.

 

Lot 9. Antique Baccarat 1847 close packed millefiori and Gridel silhouettes paperweight.

WHAT DO YOU SAY ABOUT  CARY GRANT AND PATEK PHILIPPE?

That’s right, you’d say they’re out of our league.  And you’d be right.  But there is another classic representative of our high end culture, the complex and beautiful antique Baccarat close packed millefiori and Gridel silhouettes paperweight with a date cane. BUT, this paradigm of beauty and quality is actually well within our grasp—no, not our collective grasp—Your grasp!  That’s right, relieved reader, YOU can afford this well-known classic artwork.  Watch Marty’s spin videos. It’s lucky that you have two chances to attain one this time around.

 

Lot 29. Antique French or Belgian, attributed to Val Saint-Lambert, pictorial sulphide paperweight.

LET’S HOPE SHE HAS A  HAMMACHER SCHLEMMER!

That’s right, concerned citizens; brazen street crime is no longer confined to bad neighborhoods in big cities!  It has made its way to the country lane where we witness here the daylight assault on a mother (or nanny) and her young children (or charges) by some rogue geese hellbent on doing serious damage to them all.

The woman steadfastly parries and thrusts with her bumbershoot.  Let us hope it is well-made, unlike the single-use umbrellas that are all too common in these parts.  And you should know that geese take no prisoners. I’ve been chased out of my way while walking along Lake Michigan here in Chicago. The assailants  seem a less dangerous here, behind some hard fine glass.  But we also can’t get inside to help her!  An artwork and also a timely exposé. Remember Hitchcock’s “The Birds?”

 

Lot 84. Paul Stankard 1994 mountain laurel over-all bouquet paperweight.

DON’T YOU CRINGE WHEN THEY MAKE IT LOOK SO EASY?

I would say we are blessed with a veritable cornucopia of works by Paul Stankard in this auction, but the term is redundant when we speak of the king of naturalist verisimilitude. You’ll find that cornucopia of life in each of his works, including in the more sparely rendered tableaux.  That’s because Paul puts life into every detail and even a depiction of the slightest flower and single leaf bear his dedicated attention.  (What?  Is Paul paying me on the side? No, but it’s not at all a bad idea!)  Anyway, this mountain laurel is a seemingly lighthearted paean to nature, that displays Paul’s mastery but is also airy in construction.  There’s a sense of ease to it.  The gossamer delicacy of the elements, especially of the pistil and stamen in the laurels is hard to believe.  But believe it!

 

Lot 91. Dave Graeber and Ed Poore 2012 collaborative Asian rose, chrysanthemum and pussy willow bouquet in a plaque basket-cut paperweight.

THE WORD THAT MEANS THAT THERE ARE NO WORDS

Frankly, I’m tired to trying to describe Dave Graeber’s brilliant work and feeling like the words keep falling short. The word “ineffable” comes to mind; that’s something too intense or too great or too beautiful to be described by language.

It originally referred to the failure and danger of describing or defining God. Well, we already saw what happened to Prometheus defying the gods, and Dave is inexplicably humble—so we won’t use “ineffable,”let’s just say that there is not a more accomplished and alluring paperweight out there, than this partnership between Dave and Ed.  In fact, this delicate but eye-catching treasure will make you want to move up your next big anniversary or maybe remarry your spouse just to have an excuse to acquire this!  Well, a real paperweight collector doesn’t need a reason. So let’s see if you pick up the glove  and go to your bid sheets!  Gosh, I’m out of room without having really described this! It does look to me like it was created by a sorcerer using a needle that flowed colors upon command. Exquisite.  You MUST ask for close-ups to believe the infinitesimal exactitude.  At least the harmonious, sophisticated color palette is available for appreciation by the normal human eye!

 

Lot 117. Rick Ayotte 2003 “Sunshine” chickadee and sunflower miniature paperweight

AT LEAST THESE BIRDS WON’T WAKE YOU UP!

I just want to say here that this little tableau is so wonderfully wrought that I found myself trying to feed the bird and water the sunflower. This whole series sparkles with life. And while they don’t need to be fed, they do like it when you talk to them!

 

Lot 120. Doug Merritt and Barry Sautner 1987 collaborative “Pansy” diatreta and insculpture faceted paperweight.

NO ONE SHOULD BE ABLE TO DO THIS.

Well, what is there to say here that Marty’s spectacular photographs don’t already display? Remember Prometheus, who defied the other gods and brought the secret of fire to mankind (among other things), a real faux pas on his part, for which he paid dearly.   Well, from what god did Barry Sautner (and Doug Merritt) learn the dark magic arts of diatreta?  Honestly, think of the very most difficult feat you’ve ever accomplished.  Now, think of doing it backwards and inside out, with no margin for error.  Understand?  Maybe Ginger Rogers did everything Fred Astaire did, except backwards and in high heels, but if she and Fred had a misstep, they yelled “cut” and reshot the scene for the cameras. If Barry had a misstep, well, it’s all over.  That takes passion, conviction and breathtaking ability.  He lived, playing with fire, and that’s all on display here. And do read Penelope’s beautifully written description.  This is a glass work for the ages, But you can be the one to pass it down!

 

Lot 130. Debbie Tarsitano latticinio flower, lady bugs and heart-shaped millefiori garland paperweight.

RELAX OR PAY THE PRICE!

A small garden of love wrapped in a heart.  The central flower has a charmingly casual laciness to the leaves.  And Debbie’s hallmark color palette never fails to

entertain and comfort.  All in all, with this on your bed stand to encounter first thing every day, you’ll be able to toss at least one of your blood pressure prescriptions. So get the weight and you’ll lighten up!  I’m dead serious! Includes the happiest ladybugs you’ll ever find this side of a PIXAR release!

 

Lot 139. Ken Rosenfeld 2004 pink dahlia paperweight.

PARTY OF ‘ONE’ IS SOMETIMES A GOOD THING!

Take a hard look at this relatively unimposing weight, folks.  I dare you to find an unconvincing molecule anywhere. This striking, literally breathing single dahlia is perfect and perfectly lifelike. I think Ken took a good look at this and thought, “I can’t top that, and stopped adding other elements, wisely choosing to give the design its own little glass throne. What? He works like that all the time?  No wonder I dropped out of hot shop before I started – wise move on my part.  Study this flower; you’ll find yourself forgetting to blink!

 

Lot 165. Mayauel Ward 2013 daisy and berry bouquet paperweight.

“YES, YOU CAN GO TO THE RESTROOM BUT YOU M A Y NOT!”

Raise your hand in silence if you recognize that quote! Well, she was harsh, but this joyful and brilliantly colored paperweight would have made even my 6th grade home room teacher, Sister James Martin crack a smile, and that was impossible. Thin and vicious as Margaret Hamilton in the Wizard of Oz, she had the dead eyes of Poe’s Raven, set unblinking, in perfect round-rim wire glasses, as she stood there and dared you to show any signs of life at your desk.  We never saw her hands as they always stayed folded beneath her tunic, fondling a weapon of some sort. Did I mention her jaw was an anvil?  Anyway, if anything could have made her smile, it would have been this artwork; Mayauel’s joyful daisies and berries cradled in an enticing cluster of grapes, blueberries and bellflowers.  I would say I think Sister James Martin has probably passed away, (given that she was almost 200 years old then) but I’m not certain she was ever really alive. We never saw her actually breathe. However, this paperweight is alive, resplendent with color and life, a veritable song in glass. Hallelujah!

 

Lot 299. Peter McDougall three millefiori butterflies, flower and buds paperweight.

A HAPPY CONCLUSION

This exquisitely rendered weight with the butterflies and flowers nestled lightly on a pillow of “Dreamsicle,” is too delicious to describe, but much too much fun not to mention!  Ciao for Now, friends!

 

Okay!  Thank you for your time and good luck to all of you in the bidding and remember to please call and share all your questions and remarks.  Hopefully they’ll all have at least something to do with paperweights.  We now return you to your regular lives until the checkered paperweight flag calls you back!!


Is it Summer yet? 

It nearly feels like it in Chicago, we hope everyone is thawing nicely. In case not, we have a new booklet with fresh designs hot out-the kiln!

We traveled north for paperweights recently. A new face for our website has arrived, Christina Callahan from Canada. We know you’ll welcome her!. (Check out her bio under on artists page!)

Another northern artist who always lights our fire has delivered fresh designs and the quality craftsmanship you’ve become accustomed to… Twists Glass talisman Mike Hunter.

There are of course more friends joining these northerners, so page through the booklet (have a look at the graphic above depicting all the booklet paperweights), scroll endlessly through our web inventory until the north winds call you’re name… then hurry back south where we hope it’s warmed up!

After paging through the booklet, click New Arrivals to see more images and videos of each piece.


This Spring will be Celebrated in Pixels!

Ah, there you are; we thought we would catch your eye here!  With apologies to Mr. Gutenberg and his early printing press, we’ve decided to offer our traditional Spring brochure as a digital presentation only—as we feel we’ll also be seeing most of you in person next month at the historic Bergstrom-Mahler Museum, and where we’ll have many of these weights for you to examine in person!  But in the meantime, if one of these hypnotic Hunter and romantic Ruzsa creations (or any of the other delightful selections) appeal to you, we would recommend acquiring them now to avoid disappointment!

After paging through the booklet, click New Arrivals to see more images and videos of each piece.


 

Arrive here looking for the time/date/link-to information on the Fall Auction? CLICK HERE

If you haven’t seen the video yet, click play below, it’s worth it!

Arrive here looking for the time/date/link-to information on the Fall Auction? CLICK HERE

If not… time for Some Completely Unwarranted Musings about AUCTION 80!

Welcome back, to our First Ever LH Selman Paperweight Auction 80!  And, in a world and at a time where more and more auction houses are abandoning the production of well-printed, full color, and informative catalogues, LH Selman has carried the torch into the 22nd year of the 21st Century.  We hope you’ll spend some time enjoying our efforts.   Also, please avail yourselves of Marty’s carefully created online videos! And always call with any questions! We’re also pleased to provide detailed close-ups of weights upon request.

YES, IT’S THAT TIME AGAIN AND WE KNOW YOU’RE ALL REALLY BUSY, EITHER SHOVELING SNOW OR LOOKING FOR THAT LITTLE UMBRELLA TO STIR YOUR POOLSIDE COCKTAIL, SO IF YOU MAKE IT ALL THE WAY THROUGH READING ABOUT LOT 1, (WHICH REALLY DESERVES THE FULL TREATMENT) – THE REST WILL BE REALLY BRIEF THIS TIME!

 

THANK YOU, THE MANAGEMENT.

 

LOT 1. Rare antique Mount Washington pink camellia and forget-me-not wreath magnum paperweight.

WHAT DO MOUNT WASHINGTON, PARISIAN COURTESANS, VERDI’S LA TRAVIATA, GRETA GARBO AND THE SON OF THE GUY WHO WROTE THE

 THREE MUSKETEERS HAVE IN COMMON??  WE’RE GLAD YOU ASKED…

Okay. Okay.  First let me say right up front I lied.  Technically I lied when I swore last time around that the remarkable Lot No. 1 Mount Washington American weight was the only American antique you’d ever need.   We stand here now with another stunning weight you also need!  Who Knew?  This stunning artwork offers a flower of multiple, sweet pinks – munificent petals as soft as lips and flowing in all directions.  Two young sister bulbs hold promise of similar ebullience. Rich blue forget-me-nots surround in playful protection.  This is a sumptuous masterwork.  If Jean-Antoine Watteau made paperweights, he’d have made this one! Quite a sensual success for the hard Yankees and flinty landscape of New England to bring to sultry life!

AND, with THIS Lot 1, at no extra charge large, you get bragging rights over entire chunks of priceless western culture. What economists refer to as the intangible values; you know – it’s kind of like an NFT, or Non-Fungible-Token. You own something but you don’t.  Check out the cheap champagne-induced logic that follows and flows here –

The Lady of the Camellias was an insanely popular novel by Alexandre Dumas’ son, Al Jr., and was inspired by the author’s love for the real-life nineteenth-century courtesan Marie Duplessis – known to all as “the Lady of the Camellias” because she is never seen without her favorite flower.  “One of the greatest love stories of all time,” according to Henry James.  It was the inspiration for Verdi’s opera La Traviata, and the Oscar-winning musical Moulin Rouge!  Numerous ballets, stage productions and Hollywood films included stars such as Lillian Gish, Greta Garbo, Sarah Bernhardt, Rudolph Valentino and Isabelle Huppert, to name just a few! Leave it to the French and Italians to create tragic passion out of a flower known for peace and calm.

You can now add to the list of famous artworks above, this monumental American antique magnum, containing – Yes, the Camellia!  In the novel, Marguerite Gautier is the most beautiful, brazen, and expensive courtesan in all of Paris. But despite having many lovers, she has never really loved—until she meets Armand Duval, young, handsome, and hopelessly in love with her.  And now you, yes, YOU, can step up and claim her spirit in this truly American glass cornerstone that is the embodiment of European culture.  What, you protest, what has that to do with New England Yankee American art?  Don’t be narrow-minded.  Don’t we claim French fries?

 

LOT 3.   Rare antique Bacchus close concentric red and white millefiori paperweight.

ENGLISH GLASS FOR AN ENGLISH LASS!

Sometimes the simplest combinations result in the most sophisticated designs.  Here we have very delicate reds decorating an elegant, antique white landscape with ruffles and sparkling stars.  This looks somewhat like it might have accompanied the embroidery worn by an elegant Elizabethan era royal, modeling for her portrait in miniature by Nicholas Hilliard.  How fitting that it’s Bacchus!

 

LOT 9.    Rare antique Baccarat interlaced millefiori trefoil garlands and Gridel silhouette overlay faceted paperweight.

“NOW, IS YA COMIN’ ALONG, QUIET-LIKE, …OR DOES I HAVETA MUSS YA UP, SUM…?”

(100 points if you can match this title to the clue below.) *

If, on October 4th, the Feast of Saint Francis, you keep choosing your proud, strutting rooster for the annual blessing of the animals, then this weight has your name on it. And if your favorite Warner Brother’s cartoon character was Foghorn Leghorn,*  or if your favorite literary character in Chaucer is Chanticleer, or if Chick-fil-A is your go-to restaurant, then look no further for the new centerpiece of your paperweight collection.  This Baccarat has a lacy, light and airy construction, with generous facets to allow complete access to the design.  I do worry a bit about the graceful trefoil garlands around those claws.  Hens extra.

 

LOT 17.   Very rare antique Baccarat “Légion d’honneur” enameled gold-foil medal paperweight.

… The HISTORY BOOK ON THE SHELF,

IS ALWAYS REPEATING ITSELF…. abba

The two collecting areas of military memorabilia and antique paperweights come together in this Francophile’s dream artwork of Napoleon’s handsome Legion of Honor medal encased in Baccarat glass.  We’ll try to remember to enclose an application for French citizenship with the package. But before you get too dreamy-eyed, remember that this was the same year he got himself declared First Consul for Life.  Two years later, he declared himself Emperor. Not Good.  In between, in 1803 he authorized the Louisiana Purchase for pocket change to the United States to pay for his military campaigns.  How smart did that turn out to be? But this may your only chance to acquire this badge of honor without having paid for it with frostbite while occupying a burning Moscow, and unable to remember when you last had rations.

 

LOT 18.   Antique Saint Louis two-colored crown paperweight.

SEND IN THE CROWNS, THERE OUGHT TO BE CROWNS!

 “The CROWN” (Netflix), Crown Royal Reserve, [Ford] Crown Victoria, Crowning Achievement,

Crowning Moment, – You get the picture.  “Crown” is a word that evokes importance and high achievement in our history and culture, from fearsome cars and great television to the finest whiskey (okay, yes, and the actual Crown).

Here we have an excellently constructed Crown Paperweight, with exquisitely produced spirals cascading voluptuously down into the shape of (you guessed it) a Crown!  A truly excellent example of a classic weight.  That still leaves us to deal with why Crown Point, Indiana, known only for having no waiting period for marriage licenses – got in on the name?!

With apologies to the memory of Stephen Sondheim for the cringeworthy borrowing.

 THE MANAGEMENT.

 

LOT 44.   Antique Clichy purple and white swirl paperweight.

YOU CAN WEATHER THIS STORM

Resembling nothing so much as a hurricane in your hand with a stately eye of blues and whites, this glass-inspired rip in the fabric of space-time is understandably hypnotic. The luxurious deep purples surprise the eye as the strands reveal themselves, because at a glance, the weight can easily appear to be black and white.  Holding it to the light also showcases the elegantly constructed geometry.  And it’s safe to enjoy, unlike the hurricanes outside.

 

LOT 67.   Antique New England Glass Company 1852 millefiori nosegay and garland with folded date canes paperweight.

ANTEBELLUM HISTORY AND ART

What, you ask, happened of importance in the year 1852 in these here United States?  Well, there was a presidential election but that was overshadowed by 2 even more profound events!

One was that the book Uncle Tom’s Cabin was published in Boston.  But the real reason to remember 1852, is that some magnificent Yankees created this NEGC paperweight with the popular nosegay design, and as a bonus – included the world’s smallest date cane which no one but our own Penelope would ever have found.  (Those electron microscopes come in handy.)  Smaller than a virus and disguised as a bee, this date cane appears not once but twice in this treasure! (No that’s not a nanobot in there.)  So, if you want a real American artwork with a claim to historical importance, look no further.

 

LOT 90.    David Graeber and Ed Poore 2014 collaborative lilac, arum calla chrysanthemums and berries heart-shaped basket

DOUBLE POINTS IF YOU BID ON VALENTINE’S DAY

Simply too stunning to describe.  If your love burns half as bright as this peerless symbol of eternal affection, you are indeed fortunate.  The lush, brilliantly created design by Dave Graeber is positioned high enough in the glass that Ed’s faceted undercarriage gleams as it gathers up all the light in the room and channels it into a surrounding caress of infinite points of sparkles. Honestly, if I were going to really give this artwork its praise in full measure, you’d be reading for days.  I’m showing true restraint today. You likely don’t deserve this weight, but legally you get the same chance as everyone else to acquire it!

 

LOT 99.   Gordon Smith 2003 “Gila Monster” lizard and coral snake eggs paperweight.

IN THE DESERT, ONE CITIZEN’S HOME INVASION IS SIMPLY ANOTHER’S LUNCH BREAK.

Why is the Gila monster choosing to acquire the eggs of a coral snake, which has the second most lethal venom of all snakes?  Maybe it’s because the coral snake is the only venomous snake that even lays eggs!!  With exquisitely detailed and contrasting scales that almost pulsate and offer a sense of impending motion even in its perfect glassy stillness, the prehistoric desert dweller pauses as if to alert us as to the possible negative consequences of our intrusion. He’s toxic as well, but we verified that he’d never hurt his foster family – so it’s safe to acquire this stunning tableau.

 

LOT 107.   Rick Ayotte 2004 “Abundance” chrysanthemum and berry bouquet paperweight.

HE USED EVERY CRAYON IN THE BOX

Did you ever toss and turn at night, wondering and opining as to how they figured out the unusual numbers of Crayola Crayons to offer in each different set?  Me neither.  But I did love the feel of a new box, however, and the promises it contained…. But I digress.  The point here is that Rick Ayotte has outdone himself, using every single color in the big set of crayons to create this jazzy rainbow of flowers, berries and leaves.  This bushel exudes light!  Perfect placements.  Perfect highlights and contrasts show the relaxed hand of a master.

 

LOT 120.   Charles Kaziun Junior and Pairpoint collaborative etched wine decanter bottle with matching drinking glasses and red crimp rose stopper.

HERE’S YOUR EXCUSE TO FINALLY HOST THAT 2-YEAR POSTPONED DINNER PARTY!

With clean contemporary glass design, and adorned with robustly etched floral designs that tip the hat to the classic, this is a perfect excuse to entertain, whether your guests love art glass or glass art!  Charles Kaziun Junior thought it was a great idea!  He proudly left a signature cane in the stopper. And master engraver Otto Carl Banks, who worked for Pairpoint in the middle of the last century, has signed near the base, “OCB.” Get the set a raise a toast to two gifted men who made things!

 

LOT 131.   Victor Trabucco 1984 yellow daffodil paperweight.

A FORETASTE OF THE METAVERSE?

STOP! See, you almost passed this by. Don’t be fooled by simplicity. This gleaming daffodil and its ground use brilliantly contrasting colors to create a real sense of extra-dimensional viewing.  A BOLD visual!  I had to touch my face to make certain I wasn’t wearing an augmented reality headset.  This seeming hologram is also one of the happiest weights of all time; this weight can actually make you believe in Happy Endings.

 

LOT 134.    Ken Rosenfeld 2010 snail and flowers paperweight.

WE ALL NEED TO SLOW DOWN A BIT, DON’T YOU AGREE?

 A happy and handsome snail with a lovely, variegated shell that is remindful of the strata

displayed on river canyon walls, luxuriates in a garden of perfectly executed plants and flowers.

This little guy should have been in the film, “Fantasia,” somewhere between the delicately demure dancing hippos and the softly flowing mushroom people.  Don’t hesitate; he may move slowly, but he could be gone quickly!

 

LOT 145.   Chris Buzzini 1997 upright all-over bouquet and roots block-faceted paperweight.

BUZZINI BONANZA

 It’s not like Chris needs my help in pointing out his high caliber works that understandably might have you all letting the air out of each other’s car tires in order to get yourselves a head start at the auction gate!  (Aren’t you glad our auctions don’t work like that?) But I’d be remiss not to tip my hat to this colorful compact garden complete with gorgeous flowers, delicately detailed soil, and a trio of fecund pods protecting more garden life yet to realize itself.  The unusual beveling on this masterwork serves the design particularly well.  Enough garden here to make you smile all winter.  Leave the tools in the shed.  Oh, and we have 5 more!

 

LOT 191.     Abelman 1980 iridescent pulled-feather surface design paperweight.

YOUR HEART’S AS LIGHT AS A FEATHER!  WELL, WHAT ABOUT YOUR SOUL?

Take a third and fourth look.   Art Nouveau with Art Deco are partnered in this pulled-feather paperweight and reach their combined zenith, dare we say their literal acmes, in this glorious surface design paperweight!  The shapes and lines are pure Nouveau and the color palette, the iridescent finishes and clean crisp contrasts are pure Deco.  And all of it is gloriously … handmade.  They haven’t created the machines that can create this handcrafted magic…yet!  (That will take several more months…) Speaking of magic, In Egyptian mythology, your right to an afterlife is judged against the weight of a feather. If your soul is heavier than the feather, Ammit the Devourer gets to eat your soul. (Word on the street has it that he then flosses with your dreams.)  So, besides bringing you aesthetic joy, this stunning weight can be a daily reminder to live a positive and selfless existence!

 

LOT 205.     Saint Louis 1996 “Aquarium” dimensional millefiori fish high-domed paperweight.

PLEASE LOOK OUT FOR A THREE-BEDROOM AQUARIUM

Word on the street has it that this munificent, psychedelically colored denizen of the Deep was being considered as a model for its own line of Steiff stuffed play pals.  Pixar has been also been calling. Get the idea?  This is a sumptuous and endearing creature.  And yet, there is a knowing look, just a bit of worldliness in the eyes that really marks this as a companion for adults as much as, if not more than for children.  Still, once your grandchildren see this, they’ll be waiting to fight over it one day. Actually your grown children will be the prior problem.  Make your will very clear.

 

LOT 314.     Perthshire paperweights 2000 close packed picture canes paperweight.

EVERY PICTURE TELLS A STORY, DON’T IT?

 It took the longest time to choose something from this part of the auction to share a note about.  Why?  Because there are so, so many weights of a high caliber regardless of where they fall on our pages.  We work hard to assemble the finest possible selection for each auction This lot features a marvelous storybook in glass with 54 chapters is a complete joy to contemplate in your hand. With the harmonious pastel picture canes resembling children’s building blocks, the effect is to amuse the eye, lower your blood pressure, and make you start dreaming. Picasso said, “It took me four years to paint like Raphael, but a lifetime to paint like a child.”  He also said Michelangelo at various other times, but you get the point. Break out the Crayolas!

 

Okay, I could go on but there’s an auction to offer.  So please just remember three things.

Watch Marty’s videos, they’re handsome, brief (15-20 seconds) and informative.  Then, call us for extra still shots and blow-ups of any weight you like.  Then call with any specific questions about any of the lots or questions about auction protocols or anything else. And have FUN!

 

 

 

 


TO BUY AT RESERVE CLICK HERE : AUCTION WEBSITE

LIST OF UNSOLD LOTS AT RESERVE PRICES TO PURCHASE : HERE

L.H. Selman, Ltd.’s  Winter 2022, 80th Glass Paperweight Auction, featuring 360 lots, antique and modern, as well as choice paperweight-related objects has moved into the Buy-At-Reserve stage Monday March 21st. All unsold lots are available to purchase at their reserve price.

The auction is fully online, hosted on our AUCTION WEBSITE. A web friendly digital e-catalog can be viewed at E-CATALOG, while a printed copy of the catalog is for sale at PRINT-CATALOG. For those of you who have enjoyed watching spin videos of featured pieces, they can be accessed via our YouTube Channel. If you see something to your liking, please do not fail to place an initial bid in order to ensure that you have a position in the competitive bidding that follows in the second half of the auction. Competitive bidding concludes after each lot closes, whereby the Buy-At-Reserve stage commences offering all unsold lots at their reserve prices.

If you’re new to our auctions, or if you would just like a refresher, we recently put together a video explaining the auction process. So we encourage you to watch for a full explanation of our unique slow close auctions, including the different stages, rules and processes. And please call us at (312) 583-1177 if you have any questions

We recommend that you give the catalog’s Conditions of Sale a careful examination for a full understanding of the protocols. A key for condition statements can be found in the Conditions of Sale page in the catalog. Please call the gallery with any questions about these changes or the auction format, and don’t forget, we’re always happy to send additional images, videos or condition reports upon request.

We are currently open to visit by appointment only, so please get in touch to schedule a time to see every lot in person at our gallery in Chicago, 410 S. Michigan Ave., suite 207. If you prefer to place any or all bids by phone, or have any questions, just give us a call at 1-800-538-0766.

Auction 80 Showreel

For those of you who have enjoyed watching spin videos of featured pieces, they can be accessed via our YouTube Channel. Or look for a link in the description of a lot indicating a video has been provided.


Greetings, Friends!

And isn’t it amazing to think that we are already about to end the 21st year of the 21st century — but here we are…

And looking back over the last 12 months, we’d like to happily acknowledge the privilege of assisting you all in your very individual and passionate pursuits of fine art glass paperweights, and to affirm the pleasures of our continuing relationships.  2021 also saw an increase in new paperweight admirers, a testament to the allure of this magical and eternal artform.

As we exhale briefly from a busy year, the Selman Gallery will be closed from Thursday, December 23 until Monday, January 3rd.  Our Web Store will remain open, however, and we will be shipping incrementally.  As the New Year dawns, we will be back here in person, open by casual appointment and hoping to also see many of you, whom we’ve missed for too long, in person again. Until then!

Wishing You All the Very Best Holidays!

Ben, Penelope, Marty & Paul

 

 


 

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Larry Selman

December 11, 1938 – September 20, 2021  

“Make Every Day Count”

 

Our​​ beloved husband, father, brother, colleague, and best friend, slipped away peacefully at his home in Santa Cruz, California, surrounded by his family. For many months, Larry​​ held​​ insatiably​​ to life, because he​​ simply loved​​ living—on every level.​​ Recently he​​ was busy with many projects—adding more solar power​​ to​​ the house, taking​​ magnificent​​ photographs, practicing the viola da gamba,​​ studying music theory,​​ redesigning our front yard with beautiful succulent plants, and playing Pokémon with the grandkids and other aficionados of the game. Honestly, we all thought we would have more time together.

 

The last few months, this has been his daily mantra: “Make every day count.” And we did. His three-year journey with pancreatic cancer changed everything. We made every moment count.​​ During​​ his​​ last few days, he was telling​​ everyone, “There are only two things that matter: Having work that you love, and finding the right partner.” He said how lucky he was to have​​ found​​ both.​​ 

 

Larry is survived by Marti Selman, his devoted wife of 32 years;​​ son Matthew David (Matisse) Selman, daughter-in-law Daniela Selman, grandsons Mason Lawrence Selman and Dashiell Jean Selman; son Noah Jordan Selman, daughter-in-law Sarah Selman, grandchildren Isaiah Clive Overson, Jacqueline Ruby Overson, and Khiaan J. Selman; sister Kay Ellen (Kelly) Selman, brother-in-law Robin Wallace, of Gainesville, Florida; first wife Linda Pope of Aptos; and a host of extended family and friends who will carry him in their hearts forever.​​ 

 

Born in Cleveland, Ohio to Evelyn and Morton Selman, Larry attended public schools​​ in Cleveland Heights​​ and​​ earned a Bachelor’s degree at Kenyon College,​​ after which he spent a year​​ abroad​​ studying chemistry​​ at University College, London. He​​ then went on to earn a Master’s degree and PhD in organic chemistry at Yale University.​​ After a brief career in teaching, Larry​​ discovered​​ by chance​​ what would become his career for the next​​ four decades.​​ 

 

 

In the late​​ 1960s,​​ Larry​​ found himself at a personal crossroads. With​​ his​​ PhD in organic chemistry (thanks to the persistence of his dedicated mother, Evy),​​ he was torn between the prospect of an academic career,​​ and​​ his​​ true​​ passion—playing​​ Renaissance and Baroque​​ music.​​ Larry​​ felt he​​ needed to make a choice. ​​​​ One day,​​ a​​ friend in the early music world​​ introduced​​ him​​ to one of his collections: glass paperweights. Larry was immediately​​ enthralled​​ by these small​​ objets d’art​​ and began buying and selling them​​ as a hobby,​​ which​​ in time​​ evolved into a​​ career.​​ 

 

During the Renaissance, skills and talents from many fields of expertise were combined into lives of extraordinary creativity.​​ Eventually, Larry​​ solved​​ his career​​ dilemma​​ by​​ choosing​​ “all of the above,​​ following the​​ path of innovators from the Renaissance era,​​ whose​​ hauntingly beautiful,​​ complex​​ music​​ had smitten him. In other words, why not​​ continue​​ to be a scholar​​ of many things, play​​ early​​ music, and….​​ deal in​​ collectible​​ glass paperweights!

 

 ​​ ​​ ​​ ​​ ​​ ​​ ​​ ​​ ​​ ​​ ​​ ​​ ​​ ​​ ​​ ​​ ​​ ​​ ​​ ​​ ​​ ​​ ​​​​ A picture containing person, indoor

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Larry​​ will be remembered by​​ collectors​​ around the world​​ for his work​​ in the field of​​ fine​​ glass paperweights, where he devoted​​ himself​​ to​​ education about​​ the art form​​ and​​ to​​ fostering​​ emerging​​ artists who created​​ these small treasures.​​ In 1969,​​ he founded L. H. Selman, Ltd. which began as a kitchen-table mail-order business with his first wife, Linda Pope, who co-authored his first book,​​ Paperweights for Collectors.​​ Through​​ the publication of high-quality brochures,​​ special​​ photographic techniques​​ and​​ advertising,​​ participation​​ in​​ antique shows,​​ and collectors’ meetings​​ and festivals,​​ L. H. Selman, Ltd. became the world’s​​ premier purveyor of both antique and contemporary glass paperweights.​​ For years, Larry​​ regularly traveled to London auctions to​​ bid for clients​​ or​​ to purchase​​ rarities​​ for​​ his collectors.​​ He wrote​​ numerous​​ definitive​​ books​​ about​​ the art form, and published​​ many other​​ titles​​ under his publishing house,​​ Paperweight Press.​​ 

 

Throughout his career as an art dealer, Larry drew on his lifelong skills as a photographer, figuring out the best ways to photograph glass. (He had​​ created​​ a dark room in his childhood home in Cleveland when he was fifteen). The exceptional quality of his photos set the standard among the paperweight world.​​ Always the innovator,​​ Larry was the first paperweight dealer to have a website.​​ This was in the early days of the internet, when building a website required months of laborious and unforgiving attention to detail. Larry​​ actually wrote the computer code himself, in the late hours on his home computer. He was the first paperweight dealer to establish an online auction. On two occasions, these auctions held the world record for the highest price realized for a rare antique glass paperweight.​​ 

 

Eventually the mail order / auction business evolved into a beautiful glass gallery in downtown Santa Cruz. The shop became a mecca for paperweight collectors from around the world who came to attend many festivals and other paperweight-related events which were​​ hosted​​ here.​​ He fostered a collaborative work environment where his small staff could​​ actively participate, and enjoy their work as much as he did.

 

In 2009, Larry decided​​ that after 40 years​​ it was time to “pass the torch” of the business to someone else.​​ 

L. H. Selman, Ltd. was purchased by the family of Wes Clark, a long-time collector, who moved the business to the Fine Arts Building on Michigan Avenue in Chicago, where it resides and continues to thrive.​​ 

 ​​ ​​ ​​ ​​ ​​ ​​ ​​ ​​ ​​ ​​ ​​ ​​ ​​ ​​ ​​ ​​ ​​ ​​ ​​ ​​ ​​ ​​ ​​ ​​ ​​ ​​ ​​ ​​ ​​ ​​ ​​ ​​ ​​ ​​ ​​ ​​ ​​ ​​ ​​ ​​ ​​ ​​ ​​ ​​ ​​ ​​ ​​ ​​​​ 

Larry was a devoted father who adored his family.​​ In 1976, son Matthew (Matisse) was born, followed by son Noah in 1978. Throughout his career as a businessman,​​ he​​ always found time to be​​ 100%​​ present​​ for​​ his children,​​ constructing electronic projects at the dining room table, selling​​ (hmm.. mostly buying)​​ at the local flea market,​​ having sushi-making dinners at home​​ and​​ lifelong​​ daily conversations about their many​​ diverse​​ interests and activities.

 

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