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Daum is a crystal studio based in Nancy, France, founded in 1878 by Jean Daum (1825–1885). His sons, Auguste Daum (1853–1909) and Antonin Daum (1864–1931), oversaw its growth during the burgeoning Art Nouveau period. Currently Daum is the only commercial crystal manufacturer employing the pâte de verre (glass paste) process for art glass and crystal sculptures, a technique in which crushed glass is packed into a refractory mould and then fused in a kiln.
The Daum family worked at the beginning of Art Nouveau and creators of one of France's greatest glassworks. Established at the end of the 19th century, Daum’s renown was originally linked to the Ecole de Nancy and the art of pâte-de-cristal, a major contributing factor in terms of its worldwide reputation.
During the Universal Exhibition of 1900 Daum was awarded a ‘Grand Prix’ medal. Daum glass became more elaborate, acid etching (by Jacques Gruber) was often combined with carving, enamelling and engraving on a single piece of glass to produce creative glass master-pieces. The most complicated creations also feature applied glass elements, such as handles and ornamental motifs in naturalistic forms. The Daum brothers quickly moved on to become one of the major forces in the Art Nouveau movement, seriously rivalling Gallé, so much so that when Émile Gallé died in 1904 they became the leaders in the field of decorative glass.
In 1906 Daum revived pâte de verre (glass paste), an ancient Egyptian method of glass casting, developing the method so that by the 1930s Daum's window panels used pâte de verre for richness instead of leaded or painted glass. Today Daum still used this method to produce their pieces.
Daum has always been linked with the city of Nancy. Its main manufacture locations are in downtown of Nancy and a nearby village called Vannes-le-Châtel. All the pieces are still handmade by hundreds of employees in the region.
Daum has a store at Place Stanislas in Nancy.
More than 600 glasswork items are in the Daum Collection at the Museum of Fine Arts of Nancy (Nancy Musée des Beaux-Arts) that document the history of glass manufacturing from the 1880s through the 1990s.
After this world known era of Art Nouveau, DAUM has worked with hundreds of artists and designers to update new collections.
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