It is clear that a piece of artwork such as the Greco-Roman mosaic glass bowl being offered at the Phoenix Ancient Art Gallery in Geneva was a luxury available to only the wealthiest individuals of the 1st century B.C.E. Extremely time consuming and labor intensive to produce, it is quite a rarity to find an example of mosaic glass of such immense quality and in such good, virtually intact, condition.
In response to a question about the significance of this particular millifiori glass bowl, Hicham Aboutaam, one of the owners of the Phoenix Ancient Art Gallery, along with his brother Ali, responded,
“Although mosaic glass was not uncommon in ancient times, few vessels of comparable quality and condition exist today.”
There are two similar bowls from the same time period and in the same style but of different color schemes. One is on display in the Museum of Glass in New York and another at the Yale University Art Gallery. These, and perhaps just a handful of others are the only surviving examples of the high level of beauty, craftsmanship and preservation that this bowl exhibits. Admitting the fortunate nature of the acquisition of this bowl by Phoenix Ancient Art, Ali Aboutaam remarked,
“We are quite fortunate to have found such a remarkable piece and feel very lucky to be able to present it for others to enjoy.”