Moser: 160 years of iconic glassworks
Lord Verjee of luxury tableware institution Thomas Goode & Co talks about the latest exhibition to open in its Mayfair showroom
I have been the owner of Thomas Goode for around 20 years, and we're proud to be the finest tableware shop in the world. The company was founded in 1827, so it's a big legacy to continue. It's a very unique space showcasing the most incredible craftsmanship, and this summer we have Moser exhibiting here for their 160th anniversary. It's great to see Moser's rejuvenation and how it's interpreting traditional craft in a contemporary way.
In the exhibition you will see a broad spectrum of Moser's designs over the past 160 years – everything from very traditional engraving techniques to more modern, minimal cutting methods. And each section of the exhibition reflects the zeitgeist of a period in time. There are few shops in the world that could host such an incredible exhibition.
We have a small museum here at Thomas Goode, and sometimes I look at our pieces, and imagine the conversations that were had about them throughout history, or what settings they were in. We know some pieces were once owned by Russian Tsars and the Maharajas of India, which is fascinating.
It's wonderful to see how fine craftsmanship evolves over time and with Moser, old techniques are not forgotten. It's about combining innovation and tradition. For example, one of the most spectacular new creations is the grand Ludwig lighting collection, named after Moser's founder Ludwig Moser, and inspired by the styling of classical chandeliers, but redesigned into a minimalist structure by Moser's glassmakers. Each arm of the chandelier is plated in 24-karat gold, and the final compositions contain 133 drops of mouth-blown, hand-cut topaz-coloured crystal.
I think nowadays the appreciation of craft and using your hands is more important than ever. In a world of instant gratification it's important to appreciate the time and skill it takes to make something, and striking a balance of technology and craftsmanship is crucial.
I wish more people could go and visit the Moser factory and see the process of how the pieces are made, because once you see this, you have a whole new understanding and appreciation of what it takes to make a beautiful vase or glass.
There's always a time and a place for the very best, and there's always demand for unique craftsmanship. I think more people are going back to pieces that are one-off, that you can't buy anywhere else. One of our biggest skills at Thomas Goode is that our team is so knowledgeable about the products and the processes used to make them, so it's a good substitute for visiting the factory.
The passion of the craftsmen is also hugely important. The craftmanship involved in creating objects in glass and crystal from companies like Moser is phenomenal, and sometimes when people ask about the price of objects d'art at Thomas Goode they're surprised, but if it was a painting, they wouldn't blink. It's important that these skills are valued.
LORD VERJEE is a self-made entrepreneur and philanthropist. He is the proprietor and chairman of Thomas Goode & Co; he founded Domino’s Pizza in the UK and is the chairman of Brompton Capital Limited and Ipanema Contemporary Living in Brazil. He founded The Rumi Foundation in 2006, which supports a diverse range of initiatives with the common goal of humanitarian work through education, innovation and knowledge sharing; thomasgoode.com; moser-glass.com