glass bird square

The scene is memory and is therefore nonrealistic. Memory takes a lot of poetic license. It omits some details; others are exaggerated, according to the emotional value of the articles it touches, for memory is seated predominantly in the heart.

Tennessee Williams, The Glass Menagerie

blue glass dolphinsblue glass snail

Little articles of [glass], they’re ornaments mostly! Most of them are little animals made out of glass, the tiniest little animals in the world. Mother calls them a glass menagerie! Here’s an example of one, if you’d like to see it! . . . Oh, be careful—if you breathe, it breaks! . . . You see how the light shines through him?

Tennessee Williams, The Glass Menagerie

art glass creatures kiwi and swan

JIM: Aw, aw, aw. Is it broken?

LAURA: Now it is just like all the other horses.

JIM: It’s lost its—

LAURA: Horn! It doesn’t matter. . . . [smiling] I’ll just imagine he had an operation. The horn was removed to make him feel less—freakish!

Tennessee Williams, The Glass Menagerie

 vintage glass animal ornaments avon bottles

So what are we going to do the rest of our lives? Stay home and watch the parades go by? Amuse ourselves with the glass menagerie, darling?

Tennessee Williams, The Glass Menagerie

 two art glass swan figuresclear glass turtle square

OK so I should probably fess up, I have not seen or read this play, before you give me credit for being cleverer and more well read than I am. I do like to read and spent my country childhood with my nose stuck in books and magazines, but my knowledge of the Glass Menagerie lay in the title and having heard vaguely of Tennesee Williams. He also wrote A Streetcar Named Desire. That’s why…

I am, like the character Laura however,  a bit of a loopy collector of glass animals. Not so emotionally fragile though, which is the significance of her collection.

Curious about why I do. I think it started with the girl with the dolphin taboo.  And now because I have so much colourful happy mid-century art glass  in my shop these cute little guys fit in. Nice to pick up and hold and really have no purpose other than to be beautiful and nostalgic. Normally I like a bit of functionality but craftsmanship and quality seem to be undervalued these days. Don’t you think?

God is in the details.
Ludwig Mies van der Rohe

PS: The snail and the dolphins and the Avon blue bird are sold, the turtle has gone AWOL but may turn up eventually, the rest of the menagerie are for sale. Enquire here or pop into urban rustic 6b Robertson Rd Newport