Object History: Horn Vessels

One of the beautiful things about objects made from horn is that no two will ever be the same; the variations in texture and the swirling colours make each piece a little work of art from nature itself.

 

Humans have been creating vessels since ancient times (more often than not for containing fermented drinks like mead and wine!), and long before the development of glass and metal, hollowed-out animal horns were used across many cultures throughout history.  They often appear in mythology; the Greek god of wine Dionysus was depicted feasting with a drinking horn and Thor is said to have drunk from a horn cup containing all the seas. The Celts, using horn as a sign of abundance, would intricately carve patterns or use inlaid gold to create beautiful vessels.

Nowadays we don’t usually raise a toast with our drinking horns held high, but one can find horn being repurposed all around the world. In South America, rather than discarding the horns from livestock, they are used to make guampas from which one can sip on a traditional ‘tereré’ brew.

As a fan of repurposing and collecting materials from different countries, I love the unique aesthetic horn vessels can bring to a tablescape, like the top image from the Scotland chapter in Gypsy. We have some delicate assorted horn bowls & spoons available in the shop – for storing jewellery or change, as a salt dish spoon or a cool kid’s tea set, they are perfect for anything!

FILED 14, Jul 2016

  • SYDNEY SHOP & STUDIO 3.02 75 Mary Street St Peters NSW 2044
  • MONDAY - FRIDAY 10AM-4pm OR BY APPOINTMENT
  • 02 9516 5643
  • SYDNEY SHOP & STUDIO 3.02 75 Mary Street St Peters NSW 2044
  • 02 9516 5643
  • MONDAY - FRIDAY 10AM-4pm OR BY APPOINTMENT