L.H. Selman Ltd.
Welcome to L. H. Selman Ltd., a name that is synonymous with the finest antique and contemporary paperweights for over 45 years. Our mission is to educate and promote the most pristine of all glass art forms by exhibiting the finest examples made in centuries past and by nurturing new talent emerging from contemporary independent studios. L. H. Selman Ltd. has a sterling reputation, forged through years of working together with our clients to help them build the most sophisticated of collections. We maintain an expansive gallery in Chicago Illinois, with the largest collection of antique and contemporary paperweights anywhere. Our website allows collectors to browse our inventory, read artists' profiles, and order works of art. We hold 3 auctions a year, each accompanied by a full-color catalogue, and hold periodic exclusive online auctions, both of which offer collectors the chance to acquire some of the very best in antique, contemporary, and secondary-market pieces. Our full-color brochures present new work from accomplished masters and emerging artists, as well as offerings from our antique collection. Paperweight Press, our publishing house, offers a full spectrum of literature exploring the art and science of paperweights and glass art. â€¢ Our professional consultants are dedicated to the highest level of service and attention to detail with every client, from the casual collector to the serious connoisseur. With a depth of knowledge and an ability to educate and advise individuals in developing their collections, we make a commitment that says, â€œInvest with confidence, you'll receive only the best from L. H. Selman Ltd. A BRIEF HISTORY What some might consider being a simple desk accessory has been locked in the treasure vaults of kings and collected by some of the world's most famous personalities. The origin of glass paperweights can be traced to France, about 1845, when glass factories such as Baccarat, Saint Louis, and Clichy were competing to create the world's finest crystal luxury items. Water sets, tableware, and desk accessories, such as inkwells, led to the creation of presse-papiers. These relatively affordable objects d'art were developed as elegant gift items, and exhibited to great acclaim in London's Great Exhibition of 1851. After that, the factories competed to outdo each other, creating intricate designs in grand presentation pieces which are highly sought after in today's market. The original French glass paperweight passion lasted about 25 years; after which the objects fell out of vogue, and the intricate process for creating them was virtually lost. Then in the 1950s, Paul Jokelson, an enthusiastic collector of antique weights, convinced the factories from his native France to re-invent the technique. The result is a renaissance of the most difficult of all glass art forms the contemporary glass paperweight, which in many ways exceeds the brilliance and complexity of its predecessors. Glass paperweights can be found in museum collections around the world, including the Corning Museum of Glass, the Art Institute of Chicago, and the Bergstrom-Mahler Museum in Wisconsin. They have been collected by kings, American presidents, writers, such as Colette and Truman Capote, and investors, such as Arthur Rubloff all people who became fascinated by these small, complex pieces of art which Capote described as "...rather like frozen snowflakes, dazzling patterns frozen forever."
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