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Three glass jugs and a vase, made for Kosta Boda designed by Kjell Engman.
Three glass jugs and a vase, made for Kosta Boda designed by Kjell Engman.

Kosta Boda is a Swedish glassware company known for its high-quality and artistic glass products. It was founded in 1742 in the small Swedish village of Kosta, hence the name. Kosta Boda is one of the oldest glass manufacturers in Sweden and has a long-standing tradition of producing beautiful and innovative glassware.

Background

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.

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.

Saraband Vase, Red/Amber designed by Göran Wärff for Kosta Boda.
Saraband Vase, Red/Amber designed by Göran Wärff for Kosta Boda.

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.

Sources

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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You may also be interested in

Swedish Glass Design is inventive and well crafted – Encyclopedia of Design

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.

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