Monart Scottish and Spanish combo rivalled French art glass

Monart Scottish and Spanish combo rivalled French art glass

Spanish and Caledonian talents combined to create the highly colourful Monart range

02/10/2023     Latest News

In its heyday during the 1930s Monart glass – Scotland’s answer to the French art glass movement – was celebrated for its vivid, spiralling colours in the fashionable emporiums of London, New York and Melbourne.

The product of an unlikely collaboration between the Spaniard Salvador Ysart and Isobel Moncrieff at an industrial glassworks in Perth, this distinctive cased glass was manufactured by family members in two distinct phases from about 1922 until 1961.

Colour, pattern and shape play the key role in pricing and some good examples were offered on ‘home turf’ also in Perth, by local saleroom Lindsay Burns (20% buyer’s premium) on September 21.

Although most pieces sell for under £200, there were bids of £450 for a 9in (22cm) shape A vase in mottled blue, red and clear glass and £400 for an 8in (21cm) shape GA vase in mottled black, green and orange.

While the typical production piece was fashioned by rolling or ‘marvering’ coloured glass powder or granules into clear or coloured blanks, a yellow ground baluster Shape C vase with opaque white interior was enlivened by diagonal stripes of lustrous silver decoration.

Tradition has it that Ysart found the mica flakes used to create this effect c.1935 in the local Woolworth’s. As a rarity it took £780 against a £400-600 guide.

The letters and numbers which collectors use when describing Monart can seem a little baffling. However, they simply refer to the code used by the Ysarts in two surviving pattern books (reproduced online at ysartglass.com).

Sizes were given Roman numerals from I, the largest, to XII, the smallest. The shape codes were alphabetical while the final letter and number combination references the colours and decorative technique.

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