Ioan Iațcu, De la peștișorul de aur la peștele din „Epoca de Aur”. O posibilă formă de mediere între generații

MediCult – Revista de mediere culturală II (2023)


The glass fish topic aims to bring to the fore a subject treated today with mockery, categorized as a kitsch of the past – on the grounds that it was produced in series – although there are not enough arguments to be classified as a symbol of the period communists. The ichthyoform motif modeled in glass paste has its origins in the eastern Mediterranean area. Among the most important discoveries in northern Europe mention should be made of the one at Czarnkówek (Poland). During the archaeological excavations, a glass fish was found in the grave of a young woman, dated to the 2nd – 3rd centuries BC. Starting from this discovery, in a sociological study, historian Małgorzata Litwinowicz referred to the various fish collections of glass made in Poland in important specialized factories during the 1970s-80s (Krosno, Dąbrowa Górnicza, Ząbkowice). On the territory of Romania, glass fish were produced in factories in the west and center of the country, but also in the north, in Dorohoi (Botoșani county). The purchase of the glass fish was a gesture with deep bourgeois connotations, since the fashion of buying decorative objects, in large numbers and of no particular value, has its origin in the 19th century. But criticisms did not take long to appear, they were reflected especially in the written press from the period 1963-1984.

The theme is actually a plea for trying to recover and preserve, as much as possible, such objects, considering that they are no longer manufactured in Romania. The development of „storytelling” in the museum environment could start from the well-known story „The Goldfish”. Reading such a story for the younger generations will enable the transition to understanding past decades through these glass artefacts with their almost infinite polychrome variety. Moreover, the proposed topic is addressable to all age groups.