Kosta Boda, for much of its early life, this famous Swedish glassmaking company’s production centred on drinking glasses, chandeliers, and window panes. However, in the late nineteenth century, with the employment of designers such as Alf Wallander and Gunnar Wennenberg, a more concerted design policy emerged, resulting in more fashionable, Art Nouveau-inspired products.
As with many other design-conscious Swedish industries, Kosta was strongly influenced by the Svenska Slöjdföreningen’s 1917 call for artists to work in manufacturing, hiring Edvin Ollers and others as a result.
Much of Kosta’s output during the 1920s and 1930s was Modernist. However, the company was somewhat overshadowed by Orrefors, despite the appointment of Elis Bergh as artistic director from 1929 to 1950.
Vicke Lindstrand’s arrival in 1950, who had previously worked at Orrefors in the 1930s, did much to resurrect Kosta’s fortunes. Since then, additional designers have been associated with Kosta, including Bertil Vallien, Ulrica Hydman Vallien, and Ann Wählström.
Kosta is internationally renowned as a manufacturer of high-quality glass. Following a series of mergers and acquisitions, including one by Orrefors in 1990, the company was acquired by Royal Copenhagen in 1998.
Byars, M., & Riley, T. (2004). The design encyclopedia. Laurence King Publishing.
Woodham, J. M. (2006). A dictionary of modern design. Oxford University Press.
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Well crafted and masterfully designed glassworks have become one of Swedish design’s most recognisable and sought-after products. Since World War II, both in terms of design and production, Orrefors Kosta Boda and numerous other speciality glassmakers have gained Sweden a worldwide reputation for quality and sophistication.
Vicke Lindstrand (1904 – 1983) worked at Orrefors Glasbruk as a glassware designer. He worked at Kariskrona Porslinsfabrik from 1935 to 1936; at Upsala-Ekeby from 1936 to 1950 (as art director from 1943 to 1950) Kosta Boda glassworks from 1950 to 1973, where he was design director while also maintaining his studio in Arhus.