Re: African Powderglass Decorated with Venetian Crumbs
Re: "Mille Crumb" beads with Powder Glass Centers -- Rosanna Post Reply Edit Forum Where am I?
Posted by: Beadman Post Reply
09/18/2021, 15:42:27

From about 1981 until her death in 1995, I carried on an engaging correspondence with Elizabeth Harris, who was a member of The Bead Society in Los Angeles. Elizabeth was a fascinating person and an inspiration. She corresponded with bead-people around the world, participated with The Bead Museum in Arizona, managed the Library for The Bead Society, and routinely did identifications at meetings; and she often sent me interesting beads for my information, exposure, and collections. She was also a published author of several topical booklets that remain important. I often visited her when I was in Los angles. If you have followed my activities here at BCN Forum, you probably know I have mentioned her a number of times. My 1996 calendar, Eye Bead and Magic Amulets, is dedicated to her.

Sometime in the mid-to-late 1980s, Elizabeth and I shared some correspondence about West African powderglass beads that had been decorated with random crumbs of multi-colored Venetian glass beads. Clearly crumbs mainly from millefiori beads. Among the topics we discussed was the fact that there were actual Venetian beads that strongly resembled these African beads. And a primary question was "which of these came first?" As I recall, she also discussed this issue with Robert Liu. And I think there was a short exposition on this topic in Ornament magazine. (I will ask Robert about this.)

All of the above is to say, this is a topic that has circulated for some thirty years. But (of course) becomes "rediscovered" occasionally.

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