Spheres of influence
In the modern Uni collection from French company Christofle, a range of three spherical glass and metallised vases show how painstaking craftsmanship and savoir faire can turn the seemingly simple into a refined work of art. Christofle’s Uni vases are available in small, medium and large, and each piece is handmade and mouth-blown – and therefore unique – using double-sided metallised glass with silver.
Christofle began life in 1830, founded by jeweller Charles Christofle, and subsequently became a silversmith’s. Today, it produces pieces in an ultramodern facility in northern France, but works such as these are still crafted in small workshops to time honoured methods.
For its fine silverwork, Christofle has two Meilleurs Ouvriers de France in the disciplines of planishing (flattening the sheet metal) and chasing (shaping). These skills are passed from master to apprentice. Each silversmith makes the tools needed for his craft, fashioning them to suit his own hands, and these remain personal to the artisan.