Saturday, 24 November 2007

Beer bottle glass was used in these ash trays

The late James Mack, former Director of the Dowse Art Museum in Lower Hutt, wrote that his father worked the night shift at the AHI Glass factory in Penrose, and as a 10 year old James was fascinated to see the workers 'pluck red hot beer bottles from the production line and fashion them into things fantastical.  Their best efforts were swan ashtrays, sensitively conceived but crudely rendered'.

Most of these ash trays are brown, but there are clear and green ones, using milk and wine bottle glass. 'Kia ora' (or sometimes 'Kai ora' if they got the spelling wrong) is a common motto - this recent acquisition has 'Happy Days' and the date 1966. Dates are not common, but all the dated ones I have seen are 1966.
These epergne style ash trays are the most elaborate I have seen. They have no motto or date.