Thursday, January 15, 2009

Intruder alert! Intruder alert!

" What's this?!?" I hear you gasp, "has he gone insane? They're not by P.B&S or BISTO. How DARE he pollute this sacred blog with non-collection pottery!" Yes, yes, dear reader. I am fully aware that the ceramics in this blog posting are not by any of the factory incarnations from my collection. I just thought I would digress for 5 minutes to show you some of the other ceramics that pass through this household. Some have remained here for years, other move on after only a few days - bought from flea markets, car boot sales and charity shops, then sold on ebay - hopefully for profit. Some reflect my own taste, others are purely commercial decisions about what I think will sell well. Some are mistakes. The first pot, this striking bottle type vase/pot is very modernist 1980s in feel and colour a vivid Yves Klein type blue with small dashes of copper. I was struck by the sheer audacity of the design - so simple in form and colour, yet delicate in it's little touches. It has a very clear potter's seal mark on the bottom, but without the right reference books i'm at a loss to know who it is by. If anyone out there knows, PLEASE do get in touch (looks like a lower case dc or could be a capital "R" the other way up). I love it so much that I'm not sure I will sell this one on for a while.
This next pot is likewise striking in it's form - crisp ridges where it has been handthrown. It is very heavy like a kind of stoneware. The glaze is a fantastic green with smokey patches; i'm not that familiar with studio pottery techniques but i think it may be something like Raku pottery? Again, if you are a person that knows, do get in touch. There is not makers mark, but i looks oriental in style to me and I have no idea of its age.
This jolly vase is a glossy example of continental art pottery from the early part of the 20th century. The applied marigold design is wonderful against the mottled blue background and reminds me of the motifs of William Morris and from even earlier, Elizabethan tapestries.
A handthrown, cylindrical vase with painted leaf/wheat pattern. The style is rough and ready, with no attempt to smooth out the ribbed texture. It is signed underneath with the monogram GC or CG and dated for 1958. My initial thoughts were that the grass type pattern reminded me of Glyn Colledge 's work for Denby, but i'm not a Denby collector so have no idea if this could actually be by him. My hunch is probably not as the work i have seen by him, tends to be more polished.
Along the same lines as the rough and ready vase above, this bowl was purchased from a Portsmouth artist, Gillian Walsh. She studied art&design at Portsmouth University (graduating around 2000) and whilst there experimented with smoked fired pottery. This bowl uses the smoke firing technique to highlight areas of impressed texture made by imbedding Walnuts, pistachios and other various nuts into the clay. The husks burn away to reveal the amazing indentations.
The character jug on the left comes from the Sidmouth pottery and shows the face of a pirate with a most amazing moustache. The small Toby jug on the right is commonly referred to as the snuff taker.
This quirky litte goose caught my eye in a charity shop for 50p. The naive design and striped back reminded me of the animals created by David Sharpe from the Rye potteries.
Although I know very little about studio pottery, I do know what I like, and this includes some West German pottery known as "Fat Lava" because of the lava type glazes. This piece, model number 523, by Scheurich was found in a local charity shop. I love the shape and graphic horizontal lines.
Finally, this plate (one of a pair) was at the bottom of a mixed lot of pottery bought at a local auction. Both plates have cracks and a few nibbles at the edges, but that just adds to their charm for me. They are handpainted and I think they're Chinese, possibly Kangxi in period? Again, if what I've just written should be accompanied by a large "DOH!", do let me know - my knowledge of oriental ceramics is so lacking (in my defence, the subject is SO vast!) that I would love someone to point me in the right direction.
So, there you have it, a household that isn't only Bisto Barmey but just ceramics barmey in general.


Archimandrill said...

From the mark and colour I think the blue vase could be the work of Dianne Cross who works in Keighley. see

bisto boy said...

hi Archimandrill,

thank you so much for directing me to this website. After contacting Dianne Cross via email, she has confirmed that the blue bottle vase is indeed one of hers. She tells me that she no longer produces them, but has moved on to more handbuilt works.

One of the joys of collecting, and indeed blogging, is that you continually learn new things about ceramics and ceramics artists. Also, that you make new connections with people who share the same passions.

thanks again for your message!

Archimandrill said...

A pleasure. I can never resist the challenge of an unknown mark.......

About Me

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Sometimes, life doesn't turn out the way you expected. And sometimes, it is exactly as it was 'meant' to be. But whilst i'm not a believer in fate or fatalism, I do believe that life is a both a learning experience and an obstacle course to be climbed and clambered over in the most creative way possible! In doing so, you'll get to where you should be even if it's not where you'd imagined.