Over 100 New DEK’s!

DEK I/161A 5 year project is finally completed!  There are now over 100 DEK's in the "Painted and Gold Relief” section with more examples of early Loetz DEKs soon to be added. As most of you know, Dr. Hasselbach and I have been collecting photographs of Loetz decors, shapes and decorations for over 13 years.  In that time, we have managed to acquire over 32,000 photos of Loetz. But only 6% or 2,000 photos are of Loetz “DEK’s” and less than 1% of those DEK photos have identifiable marks on them.  Realizing that one documented DEK mark can help reveal many examples and knowing how rare it is to find one of these marks, makes our research and your DEK photo contributions even more important.

Decors and shapes are much easier to document than Loetz decorations (DEK’s), especially the “Painted and Gold Relief” decorations.  Because these DEK marks are applied on the bottom of the piece and usually with a delicate gold paint, most have not survived after 100+ years.  This means that while we may have many DEK photo examples in our library, most cannot be documented.  Luckily, there is one place in the world where there are hundreds of preserved Loetz DEK examples, the Glass Museum Passau!

Early in 2015, my husband and I contacted Peter Höltl, the owner of the Glass Museum Passau, to request permission to research and photograph their vast collection of Loetz DEK examples in the hopes of finding some of these illusive DEK marks.  Permission was graciously granted and we scheduled a trip to meet with Herr Höltl at the Glass Museum Passau in June of that year.  We were able to remove and examine each of the “Painted and Gold Relief”, “Etching Ink” and “Etched Silberiris” examples from the museum’s cases.  We took over 1,500 photos and found at least 30 preserved marks, 20 of which represented the discovery of a newly documented DEK.  Each time we would turn over a piece and find a mark on the bottom, it felt like finding buried treasure. Discovering twenty newly documented DEK’s might not seem like much, but when you view some of the new examples added to the site such as DEK 57 and I/161 and see how many examples we can now match to these DEK numbers, it really is exciting.  We are all indebted to Herr Höltl and the Glass Museum Passau for their preservation of this glass and their willingness to collaborate with members of the Loetz Advisory Group to help bring this history and information to Loetz collectors from around the world.  Without the generosity and kindness of Peter Höltl, the Glass Museum Passau, and fellow collectors who are willing to share this important information, much of the history and documentation of this glass would remain hidden and unavailable for the next 100 years. 

 Many of you have sent links and/or photographs of DEK examples that you own or have found in the market place. I apologize if I have missed recognizing some of you and would appreciate it if you could remind me of your help in documenting some of these rare and illusive DEKs.  Your continued support of Loetz research and your patience waiting for these new DEK’s to finally be posted on Loetz.com is most appreciated.  From now on adding a new DEK will be much easier as I will only have to add one new category at a time instead of 100!

Note: The introduction in the “Painted and Gold Relief” section and the “DEK Anomalies” section will help explain many of the nuances found in this DEK section. For example, while DEK I/170 is often decorated with beautiful, exotic birds, this DEK is identified not by the various birds placed on the objects but rather the beautiful spider mums and colorful glass cabochons that decorate these vessels.

Additional information