There are three different series of Bjørn Wiinblad Christmas plates, all produced by Rosenthal. The series described here are the porcelain Christmas Gospel plates from 1971-82.
At the same time, a series of glass plates in bluish colors with similar motifs was released. From 1983 to 1994 a series of Christmas carol illustrations also ran. All three series each lasted twelve years – twelve seems to have been a sort of magic number for Wiinblad plates.
The Christmas Gospel plates are held in strong colors and gold, and are quite oriental in their look. The prices for them differ a lot on eBay and other net auctions. But they have maintained a reasonable price range over the years, unlike the classic Danish blue Christmas plates from this period, which have decreased tremendously.
The first plate from 1971 is much rarer than the following, so it normally costs about four times as much as the later plates. The plates from 1972-74 are also quite rare and mostly cost twice as much as the plates from the mid-seventies. And finally, the last three plates from the eighties are slightly more expensive than the previous. So, my collection is from 1974 to 1982 minus the -81 plate, which I still hope to find for reasonable money.
Bjorn Wiinblad/Rosenthal – Christmas Gospel Plate 1971
Bjorn Wiinblad/Rosenthal – Christmas Gospel Plate 1972
Bjorn Wiinblad/Rosenthal – Christmas Gospel Plate 1973
Bjorn Wiinblad/Rosenthal – Christmas Gospel Plate 1974
All the plates are labeled “Weihnachtsteller” on the back, and below that they have a German text telling what they depict. The sequence of the scenes is a bit random, which is rather disappointing when you think of the perfectly disposed story on Wiinblad’s old Nymølle month plates.
It has puzzled me why Wiinblad has chosen these particular motives and sequences. First we have Mary with child and the Epiphany on four different plates – almost a separate series before the others. Then we have the Annunciation – which is how it all started as far as I know. Read more
Bjorn Wiinblad Part 3: Own Studio work (Vaerksted).
Number 3 of a 3 part series summarising Wiinblad’s career as a ceramic designer.
I think some of the most impressive work by Wiinblad comes from his work in his own studio, “Værksted” which started in 1952 in Copenhagen. Generally they are “fajance” ware – eathernware pieces with a white base glaze on which a coloured design is hand painted. Wiinblad designed all of the pieces from his studio, and painted many of them himself – but had also help of up to 3 skilled painters to paint his designs onto the forms to keep up with the volume produced.
Bjorn Wiinlbad – Group of Studio Pieces
Wiinblad’s designs from his own “Vaerksted” often featured whimsical characters, sometimes in quite bizarre costumes and headgear – in the forms of lady-head vases, figurines, sculptures, candlesticks, and jars. Read more
Bjorn Wiinblad, Rosenthal.
Number 2 of a 3 part series summarising Wiinblad’s career as a ceramic designer.
Wiinblad began work with German Company Rosenthal around 1957 after being “discovered” by Philip Rosenthal who was looking for new designs for Rosenthal line. This collaboration with Rosenthal became one of the most important in his life and lasted over 50 years.
The work by Wiinblad at Rosenthal is often characterised by its colour saturated, almost psychedelic use of pattern and colour – often highlighted with the use of gold and silver.
I think some of the most spectacular series Wiinblad produced at Rosenthal were the 3 different series of Christmas plates, and out of these the “Gospel” plates, (1971-1982) are undoubtedly the most spectacular with their jewel like use of colour, highlighted with gold outlining.
Bjorn Wiinblad, Christmas Plate 1976, Rosenthal
Bjorn Wiinblad, Christmas Plate 1977, Rosenthal
The following is a list of series Wiinblad designed for Rosenthal, from the German Wikipedia site for Wiinblad, which has the best entry I have found on Wikipedia for Wiinblad. The list is not complete, but It has some good timelines and milestones of Wiinblad’s career: Read more