Lapid Pottery Israel
Lapid Pottery, Tel-Aviv, Israel
There is very little documented about the history and work of the Lapid Pottery Works in Tel Aviv, Israel – formed shortly after the state of Israel was formed post WW2 in 1949.
The earliest pieces I have seen from this pottery are around 1952, very glossy and nowhere near as sophisticated in design as work which soon followed once the pottery was more established, and began exporting. The pottery closed sometime in the 1980s. They produced a range of items from kitchenware to sanitary ware, but they are known worldwide and popular amongst mid-century collectors for their hand painted art ware pieces – from small candle holders to massive floor vases.
I have only ever found one published reference to Lapid Pottery, which is a paragraph in the book “Art in Israel” by Benjamin Tammuz published in 1963 by Chilton Company U.S.
“Elspeth Cohen, designer for the Lapid factory , has also been responsible for some of the best Israeli ceramics. Her style is clean, austere and classical and in some ways reminiscent of contemporary Scandinavian design. It is unfortunate that Lapid is not equipped to produce large tableware, since her talent is admirable suited to this field”
In the past 7 years or so, much more of the history of Lapid is being documented, thanks to Kobi Klaitman in Israel whos father worked at the Lapid factory. Kobi has a facebook page going for Lapid Pottery, and the history of it is now unfolding. You can see the page HERE
Lapid is certainly reminiscent of both Danish and West German pottery at the time, which is probably what attracts me to it….but at the same time there is nothing else quite like it. What I love about it is the pure Modernist nature of it – with the wonderful patterns, colours and designs.
All Lapid pieces like the ones below are slip cast stoneware which is hand painted with either oxides or glaze. The Wax-resist technique was also one often used as decoration.
Nearly all of the handpainted pieces you will find are signed on base by the maker (e.g. “Dan”, “Esther”, “Batia” etc.) and the word Lapid. There is no 1 painter who is “better” or more collectable than others – but some designs reach much higher prices simply because of the design or look of the piece.