If WE were married, this would be our Diamond Anniversary. 

If we were employees, celebrating 75 years of service, we’d likely be sleeping on the job.

And if we were a 75-year-old Buick, we might be sitting around with plants growing through our open hoods, or we might have been melted down and repurposed as suitcases and skateboard wheels.

So thankfully, our 75th is an Auction, where we celebrate – an adventure in paperweights, featuring nothing but good times.  Our stunning catalogue is filled with endless pages of handcrafted, hand-selected, and hand-some works of wonder, and all hand-placed on the shelves! Now we just need a hand from you to help find loving homes (come back from the ledge – we’re done rapping!) for them all.  This auction is so full of quality, you’ll be tempted to pay for your weight twice, just because it will feel like the right thing to do!

So let’s take a quick glance at about 3% of the lots together, shall we?  That leaves the joy of discovering the other 97% of this auction’s offerings to you on your own, aided by our 65-page treasure map!!


And they require real effort, so show you care!

And don’t forget, Competitive Bidding begins on Tuesday, July 21st. For more details click on the Auction Blog.

(All right, drawing blind from a bucket with 360 numbered balls, we happened to pull out no 1 first, so let’s chat a while…) 


LOT NO 1: Very rare Antique Mount Washington tri-colored rose bouquet and millefiori butterflies magnum paperweight.  

And claiming the number one spot in this high-toned slugfest is an America First, Second and Third level work of Art– all in one exuberant paperweight!  That’s Right, Patriots!  Remember John Prine’s classic 1970s song, “Your Flag Decal Won’t Get You into Heaven Anymore”?  Maybe not, but NOW we have found a paperweight that WILL!!  No Kidding!  And if you ever find that you’re turned away from the Pearly Gates with this Mount Washington Masterpiece in your hands as an entry fee, you may return it for full refund.  Look up the description and take pride in this apotheosis of skilled American workmanship, (with help from the finest immigrant European glassworkers, artisans and artists of the time).  Ask to see close-ups of this glasswork. 

You likely won’t be seeing this again.  And by the way, the Prine song is based on a true story!   


LOT NO. 2: Extremely rare antique Pantin pink rose and bud paperweight

Shifting gears from the Mount Washington, with its raw power mindful of a sculpture by Sir Jacob Epstein, we move on to a flower that looks as though it were painted in beautiful dimensionality by none other than Henri Fantin-Latour the 19th century French genius! (Did you guess that?)  This is bulbously deliciously dimensional, a real piece of royal pastry, reigning on a stately white cake…Okay, a cupcake, maybe, but just work with us, willya?


LOT NO. 3: Antique Baccarat 1848 scattered millefiori and gridel silhouettes on blue carpet ground paperweight.

This is simply a crisply assembled classic with sparkling canes on a vibrating carpet of the richest blue, and dazzled with a million tiny stars.  Examples of this weight don’t come better than this stellar example.  A high point in any Baccarat collection.  


LOT NO. 6: Very rare antique Saint Louis patterned millefiori and dancing devils carpet ground paperweight.

This is an awesome paperweight. What looks like a star cluster or cosmic cloud, slowly peeling back and drawing you into the center of what – the universe or maybe the heart of a complicated flower budding slowly open?  This work sports a very unusual set of interlocking and overlapping cane fields that aggregate to become something that appears organic And wouldn’t you just know it – at the center of everything there are two devils as delicate as an etching by Whistler, sketched with a hypodermic needle in bright red.  At least they’re just dancing – or maybe it’s dancing like in West Side Story, where a social faux pas could get you a lethally sharp rebuke?  You need to call for close-ups of the close-ups on this exquisite paperweight.


LOT NO. 15: Antique Clichy close concentric millefiori and roses stave basket paperweight. 

This little garden of lush roses and baby blues is concentrically disciplined but otherwise very playful in its rings of unusually sequenced pastels. There’s a reason Clichy isn’t with us making modern weights.  They knew they had done their very best a century and a half ago, and they’re content to rest on their laurels and read the great press clippings from yesteryear. 


LOT NO. 120: David Graeber 2020 all-over cherry and pink blossom bouquet with honeybee swarm orb.  

Just read page 27 in the auction catalogue.  And look up the Glass Art magazine May/June 2020, article, because you really can’t describe this wonderworld – it would take too long.

Let’s just say, “Okay it’s all real inside!”  No one who walks in the gallery believes us anyway!


LOT NO. 163: Cathy Richardson 2016 koi engraved surface design paperweight.

With this new Cathy Richardson splashing around on your favorite presentation table, you’ll need little else for a good while by way of classic and classy entertainment.  (You may now dump the 5 streaming services and their 3000 programs.)   This masterful paperweight is akin to a flowing, decorated, transparent silk kimono wrapped around an azure globe—which is covered with an engraved interlocking of playful koi. Every slight tilt of the axis here and you have a notable visual shift in the interplay between the members of this dance academy.  Some of the koi are a bit bold while other koi are a bit …coy (sorry – couldn’t resist!). The sculpture is a graceful demonstration of captivating tension between stasis and motion. The only tension here is that there is only 1 of these, and there are quite a few of you out there.  Sorry about that!  


LOT NO.192: Alison Ruzsa 2001 “Technicolor Dance Party” frosted house-shaped magnum paperweight.

You’ve heard that “People who live in glass houses shouldn’t throw stones!”

That’s Right, folks! Alison Ruzsa is throwing a bash, and people are almost dancing on air! Lot 192 features a splendid shindig with viewing on all four sides of the house.
Intentional, subtle rippling in the glass windows lends perfectly to the rhythmic motion of the colorfully clad dancers, who are generously spaced throughout the dance floor. Turns out that this is the inspiration for the Prince song where they were going to party like it’s 1999! 


LOT NO. 247: Noble Effort 1984 clear-encased close packed millefiori marble.

Voted the absolute most fun lot of the auction, this weight combines a colorful children’s toy block or puzzle aesthetic with a formidable and intricate design that draws the eye around and teases you to see if you can look everywhere at once!  Looks like a lot of people want to relive their childhood by fighting tooth and nail for this unusual and coveted toy.  Tooth and nail – yeah, that was definitely kindergarten in my Chicago neighborhood!   


LOT NO. 264: Lundberg Studios bird, clouds and stars compound paperweight.

We’re running out of your time, so let’s just finish with this auction’s winner of the “Too Cute for Words” award: ____________________________________________________________!!!

Apologies to all those who lobbied for their favorite lots to be covered and were disappointed.

It’s a good life lesson for you. And a donation of less than $50 gets you nowhere near the front of the line.  So, for the other 350 lots – get over to your computers and open those catalogues!!!


(Click HERE to begin placing bids!)





L.H. Selman, Ltd. is pleased to announce our Summer 2020, 75th Glass Paperweight Auction, featuring 360 lots, antique and modern, as well as choice paperweight-related objects. Initial bidding begins Monday, July 6th at 9am, with competitive bidding beginning on Tuesday, July 21st.

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.