Michael Andersen & Sons Pottery, Denmark
Michael Andersen and Sons Pottery (MAS), Bornholm Denmark.
Michael Andersen & Sons was founded in the 1880s (from an earlier 18th Century Pottery) on the island of Bornholm, Denmark – one of the major centres of Danish pottery production during the 19th and 20th Centuries.
Jens Michael Andersen (1859-1931) who was the founder, had trained at the local Hjorth pottery.
His 4 sons worked in the pottery, and one son, Daniel (1885-1959) developed the iconic “Persia” glaze in 1935, which won an international award. The Persia glaze went on to be used on many designs well into the 1960s.
It is the “Art Pottery” of the 1950s -1970s which MAS are now best known for worldwide…but I also love some of the Art Deco style designs from the 1930s – although these are harder to find in excellent condition now.
Marianne Starck originally from Germany, was one of the top Ceramicists who contributed to the success of Michael Andersen & Sons Pottery in the mid 20th Century.
She started with the Factory as Artistic Director in 1955 and remained until its closure in 1993, designing many iconic series of which the “Negro” series is probably one of the most coveted now.
Marianne’s work is usually inscribed with the initials M.S.
Since 1930 items from MAS have usually been marked with the three fish stamp in various designs. Sometimes it is a simple label, other times just an impressed mark of 3 herrings.
The 3 herring mark is also the official seal of the town of Ronne, where the factory was located.
The M.A.S. pottery was partly resurected by ceramicist Solveig Ussing, and it operates currently from a small workshop in Ronne, where some of the original MAS moulds are still used.
The photographs in this article are of pieces that have passed through my hands, so of course they only represent a fraction of all of the designs made.