A harmonic fusion of art and music

23 April 2024

The collaboration between SCC member glasswork Kosta Boda and the Eurovision Song Contest started in 2008, as Kosta Boda became the official trophy supplier to the contest. With 2024’s edition of the ESC around the corner, we took the opportunity to speak to Kosta Boda’s UK branch about the story behind the partnership, Swedish glass-crafting industry, and not least – how Kosta Boda is celebrating the iconic trophy coming home once again.

Kosta Boda and Eurovision Song Contest share the common ground of art and artistry. We both enjoy and challenge contemporary art at the core. Art in the music, art in the glass,” says Sašo Taneski, UK and Ireland Representative for Kosta Boda. 

This mutual vision, together with the renowned glass artist Kjell Engman’s music influences, ignited the partnership that brought Kosta Boda to become the official ESC trophy provider in 2008. Engman’s inspiration for the iconic shape of a 1950’s style microphone was found from the year 1956 – when ESC was first established to unite the countries of a divided Europe. 

‘United by music’
The official Eurovision slogan – first created by the BBC in 2023 to showcase the partnership between the UK, Ukraine, and host city Liverpool - reflects the power of music to bring people together in a world where geopolitical disruption is once again present. 

Glass artist Kjell Engman embodies the slogan by creating art influenced by music and positivity, characterised by bold colours, and playful shapes: “My art is not political, on the contrary – it should be equal to an exciting and energetic party. People enjoy my art because it is positive and happy”, he explains.

Swedish Glassmaking – a rich heritage 
ESC’s ‘Mother Trophy’ is crafted at the Kosta Glassworks in Sweden. Its location, in the heart of the dense forests in the Swedish Province of Småland, was initially chosen to conveniently provide both Stockholm and Karlskrona with glass. Now - it is widely recognised as ‘The Kingdom of Crystal’. 

“The innovative craftmanship, knowledge, courage, and determination that was created in the forests of Småland, have very much contributed to the rich history of Kosta Boda,” Sašo explains. 

This history has also laid a solid foundation for continued success, not least in the UK – which has been a strong and important market for Kosta Boda since it first launched. Sašo believes that the bold and creative designs, a reputation of Swedish high-quality production, together with an ability to maintain and develop collections with a renowned group of designers has been key in establishing a high brand recognition among the UK audience.

“We steer towards a creative and modern lifestyle, an independence that matches the UK consumer. It’s well designed, functional objects and interior design products with high integrity - bold and creative for everyday life.” 

Back to the motherland
For the ones eager to get a sense of the ESC trophy at their own home, a number of limited-edition miniature replicas are produced each year at the Kosta glassworks. This year, as a salute to the homecoming 
of the trophy, Kosta Boda has stretched the number of replicas to 500. 

Who gets to take the ‘Mother Trophy’ home we are yet to find out. However, as the world eagerly awaits the ESC to kick-off in Malmö Arena in May, one thing is for sure: a piece of Swedish craftmanship will be present on the winning stage, with its legacy in glassmaking shining brightly. 

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