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Posts from the ‘Nils Thorsson’ Category

Aluminia//Royal Copenhagen “Gunhild” Plate Set, Nils Thorsson

I had part of a series of the Aluminia//Royal Copenhagen fajance plates pictured below some time ago, and eventually sold them on.

Years later as often happens, I have stumbled across their designer and name. I loved the orange brown autumn tones, and the beautifully hand painted motifs of fruits and flowers.

While looking through an auction catalogue at Lauritz.com recently I stumbled upon a whole set of these fruit plates as it was originally configured, and a quick bit of research led to finding out more of their story.

The series name was apparently “Gunhild” and was designed by Nils Thorsson for Aluminia//Royal Copenhagen 1933, and in production until 1968 from what I have read.

They seem to hard to get hold of, but not that expensive if you do find them.

Aluminia Gunhild Plate, Nils Thorsson, Aluminia

Aluminia Gunhild Plate, Nils Thorsson, Aluminia

Aluminia Gunhild Plate, Nils Thorsson, Aluminia

Aluminia Gunhild Plate, Nils Thorsson, Aluminia

Aluminia Gunhild Plate, Nils Thorsson, Aluminia

Aluminia Gunhild Plate, Nils Thorsson, Aluminia

Aluminia Gunhild Plate, Nils Thorsson, Aluminia

Aluminia Gunhild Plate, Nils Thorsson, Aluminia

 

Aluminia Gunhild Plate, Nils Thorsson, Aluminia

Aluminia Gunhild Plate set Nils Thorsson, Aluminia – Photo Lauritz.com DK

Aluminia Gunhild Plate, Nils Thorsson, Aluminia

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Nils Thorsson Løvspring, Royal Copenhagen 1943

I bought the vase below at auction some time ago, not knowing anything about the design – but it just had that quality of something special.

With help of a reader in the U.K. who had the design in another shape, it was finally identified when she wrote to Royal Copenhagen who identified the design.

“Your vase is actually very rare. So rare that it is not mentioned in the book about “Aluminia” by E. Winge Flensborg, which has a list of the known items of a small series of vases from 1943/44, named “Løvspring”, by Nils Thorsson. Aluminia was the earthenware factory run together with The Royal Copenhagen Porcelain Factory. Due to the situation under the war there was a shortage of raw materials and Thorsson sought to come up with alternative materials. This series is made from red clay. The items came with glazes in various colours: Yellow, brown, green and blue over a scrafitto-decoration.  It was a very short lived production.”

The piece is made from terracotta clay and the surface colour comes from what appears to be a clay slip brushed over the clay and then covered with a clear low fired (borax probably) glaze which is pitted with tiny air bubbles typical of low fired glazes using easily available inexpensive materials. The sgraffito design is really makes the piece. Like many early pieces of Nils Thorsson it is not signed, but stamped for 1944. The shape is number 2338 – (16x 12cm).

Since being identified, I have seen the design on odd occasions, but it remains an elusive design.

Royal Copenhagen, Nils Thorsson - Løvspring

Royal Copenhagen, Nils Thorsson – Løvspring

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Nils Thorsson, Royal Copenhagen Pattern 719

Nils Thorsson, Royal Copenhagen Pattern 719

Design or Pattern number 719 by Nils Thorsson for Royal Copenhagen/Aluminia is one of the most recognised and popular designs from the BACA series in the 1960s.

The design is such a beautifully complex mixture of subtle colours, line patterns and textures – and the design contains elements which don’t reveal themselves immediately to the viewer.

On most pieces the design consists of outlined or framed elements joined together with lines and repeat patterns. Inside the framed components are designs of fish – sometimes a repeat pattern, sometimes a single fish.

Other elements appear to be floral – or perhaps they are seaweed or other aquatic flora. The more you study one of these pieces, the more the design reveals itself to you.

In addition to the design, the complex nature of the glazes which Nils developed for the BACA series, means that each piece turned out slightly different when fired in the kiln – adding to the “handmade” appearance of each piece.

 

Nils Thorsson, Royal Copenhagen Pattern 719

Nils Thorsson, Royal Copenhagen Pattern 719

Nils Thorsson, Royal Copenhagen Pattern 719

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