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Posts tagged ‘Stoneware’

Midwinter Stonehenge

Midwinter Stonehenge is one of the standout British designs of the 1970s. The series was created by Eve Midwinter c1972 who had previously worked at the Portmeirion factory. The look of Stonehenge was revolutionary and so much of its time.

The Stonehenge shape is typified by its studio like geometric forms, bold curved handles and the very tactile rounded lids and knobs. The designs and colours in Stonehenge typify the “back to nature” design ethos of 1970s in the same way as does Arabia Finland’s Ruska.

“Creation” was the first design of the Stonehenge series – an light cream coloured gloss base glaze, flecked with iron oxide and rustic iron saturated edges. It became popular instantly, and at the height of its popularity 5 tons of glaze was being used each week to keep up with demand. It was exported world wide – and you will sometimes find different names used for the U.S. market.

The Stonehenge designs of “Sun”, “Moon”, and “Earth” soon followed after “Creation” and all became equally as popular. These designs which were all based on “creation” were in production until 1982, and “Sun” even longer. The pieces could be mixed and matched – adding to their appeal.  A variation of the design “Wild Oats” by Eve Midwinter also became a very high selling pattern. These 5 patterns from the “Creation” series are the ones you now see most often on the secondary market, and are now being discovered by a whole new generation.

The very last pattern of the Stonehenge series was “Nasturtium” (designed by Jessie Tait) with very vivid colours – but was later withdrawn around 1982 because of legislation on cadmium in blazes. Read more

Upsala Ekeby Kosmos – Berit Ternell

Upsala Ekeby Kosmos – Berit Ternell

The Kosmos series was designed by Berit Ternell, for Upsala Ekeby-Gefle (Sweden) and produced between 1966 – 1977.

I love the shapes, and the glaze colour of a deep transparent blue with the brown clay showing through on the ridges.

Kosmos came in 2 colour décors – this blue/brown and a green/brown which is much less common.

The following background on Berit Ternell I’ve managed to glean from the Swedish Wikipedia and the Upsala Ekeby Museum site .

Berit Ternell began an apprenticeship at the age of 15 as an apprentice in ceramic design at Stenebyskolan, continuing education she had received at the Society for Industrial school in Gothenburg . She was an intern at Upsala-Ekeby Ltd. and also worked abroad during the 1950s including some time at TG Green in the UK. She was also employed at Bofajans before she worked for a long period be 1957 – 1971 at Gävle Porslinsfabrik where she was chief designer. After working at Gävle, Berit taught at the Industrial Art School (HDK) in Gothenburg for over 20 years. She was also affiliated with the Rorstrand and Reijmyre glassworks. During the 1960s. Berit received a number of scholarships and awards for her designs, including an international award for KOSMOS in Holland in 1967.

Upsala Ekeby - Kosmos Teapot, Berit Ternell

Upsala Ekeby – Kosmos Teapot, Berit Ternell

Upsala Ekeby - Kosmos Cup/Saucer, Berit Ternell

Upsala Ekeby – Kosmos Cup/Saucer, Berit Ternell

Upsala Ekeby - Kosmos Milk Jug, Berit Ternell

Upsala Ekeby – Kosmos Milk Jug, Berit Ternell

Upsala Ekeby - Kosmos Plate, Berit Ternell

Upsala Ekeby – Kosmos Plate, Berit Ternell

Upsala Ekeby - Kosmos Backstamp, Berit Ternell

Upsala Ekeby – Kosmos Backstamp, Berit Ternell

I have been unable to find an image of the green “Kosmos”, however the same forms of Kosmos were also used on a design called “Cuba” during the same production period. The glaze is a matt speckled  brown – very similar in tones and variations to Arabia Finland “Ruska”. Read more

Jens Quistgaard Ceramic & Rosewood Humidors, Kronjyden Nissen

Jens Quistgaard, Ceramic & Rosewood Humidors

Apart from the dinnerware designs Jens Quistgaard created in the 1960s and 1970s for Kronyjden Nissen he created a series of beautiful ceramic/rosewood accessories for cigarettes, smoking and cigars.

While this might seem odd to use these days, let’s not forget this was at a time when smoking was seen as a normal part of daily life, and often portrayed as aspirational.

The pieces he created included humidors, ashtrays, cigarette jars etc. They were pieces made to be proudly displayed as luxury items.

The glazes used were mostly from the azure and umber dinnerware series, combined with the most beautifully crafted and sculpted rosewood lids on many of the pieces which Quistgaard also designed.

These designs  also complimented a now iconic series designed by Quistgaard known as the “Rare Wood Table Top Collection” of trays, bowls, ice buckets, pepper mills for Dansk Designs in 1961.

Lettering was used on the ceramic surfaces as a decorative technique to stunning effect, with a repeated word embossed on to the clay body, accentuating the beauty of the glaze and form.

It is not often you find wood and clay combined well – but Quistgaard did so to perfection in these designs.

Below are some of the pieces I have come across, but there are several more designs in this series which is now very hard to find, and keenly sought by design collectors.

Jens Quistgaard, Cigar Humidor, Kronjyden Nissen

Jens Quistgaard, Cigar Humidor, Kronjyden Nissen

Jens Quistgaard, Cigar Humidor, Kronjyden Nissen

Jens Quistgaard, Cigar Humidor, Kronjyden Nissen – Top View

Jens Quistgaard, Ashtray, Kronjyden Nissen

Jens Quistgaard, Ashtray, Kronjyden Nissen

Jens Quistgaard, Ashtray, Kronjyden Nissen

Jens Quistgaard, Ashtray, Kronjyden Nissen

Jens Quistgaard, Cigarette Jar, Kronjyden Nissen

Jens Quistgaard, Cigarette Jar, Kronjyden Nissen

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Jens Quistgaard “Rune” Design, Kronjyden Nissen

Jens Quistgaard “Rune”, Kronjyden Nissen

Another of the great stoneware designs by Jens Quistgaard for Danish maker Kronjyden Nissen in the 1960s.

This design is called “Rune”, and the motifs on the design appears to be based upon or give an impression of early Runes (turned on their side) which were which were used to write various Germanic/Scandinavian languages before the adoption of the Latin alphabet.

Again it is a stoneware dinner service, this time with a smooth semi matte glaze with lovely pale olive green to ochre colours on the rims and edges. Again the brass rattan wrapped handles on some of the pieces add to the feel of being hand-crafted.

Rune Design Cup, Saucer, Plate, Jens Quistgaard for Kronjyden Nissen

Rune Design Cup, Saucer, Plate, Jens Quistgaard for Kronjyden Nissen

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Jens Quistgaard “Azur”, Kronjyden Nissen

Jens Quistgaard’s “Azur” Design was created for Kronjyden Nissen Demark in the early 1960s, soon after “Relief”.

The design features a charming abstracted floral repeat motif, reminiscent of Japanese cherry blossom. The plates are have an octagonal form, and the whole series seems a further refinement of the “Relief” design.

The most common colourway you will find it in is a subtle blue grey, but the design was also made in at least 1 other colour – a chocaltey brown called “Umbra”

Kronjyden Nissen

Kronjyden Nissen “Azur” Jens Quistgaard, Teapot

Kronjyden Nissen

Kronjyden Nissen “Azur” Jens Quistgaard – Plate form

Kronjyden Nissen

Kronjyden Nissen “Azur” Jens Quistgaard – Cup, Saucer, Plate

Kronjyden Nissen

Kronjyden Nissen “Azur” Jens Quistgaard – lidded Sugar Bowl

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Derek Smith, Australia

Derek Smith (b 1931 – )

Derek Smith was a already an accomplished ceramic designer and art teacher in the U.K. when he moved to Australia in 1956.

He set up a studio and kilns while he was teaching at Bowral High School in the Southern Highlands of New South Wales, near Sturt Pottery where Smith developed working relationships with the potters there at the time.

Smith was then invited to teach at the Tasmanian School of Art, and his exhibition at Domain House in Hobart in 1963 was the first exhibition of stoneware pottery in Tasmania.

Smith spent 2 years setting up the ceramics course the the Tasmanian School of Art 1962-64 before continuing to teach until 1973, while developing a studio practice in Beecroft NSW.

In 1973 he was invited to establish and manage a pottery studio within the Doulton Australia factory. There he managed a studio with 6 staff. Derek designed the forms. Some were hand thrown and some were made using moulds and a jolley machine to increase output and efficiency. During this time Smith also continued to produce his own studio work.

Derek Smith’s skill as a designer and ceramicist were well suited to commercial production however the relationship with Doulton however was relatively short lived – ending in 1976-7 when Doulton Australia was sold, and Smith set up Blackfriars Pottery in Sydney which became a one of the largest and most successful potteries in Australia at that time.

In the 1980s he returned to Tasmania and focused on studio and exhibition work at his new studio Mangalore.

Derek Smith - Doulton Australia Vase

Derek Smith – Doulton Australia Vase. Doulton stamp can be seen near the base.

I view Derek Smith’s work up there with the best of Australian ceramic design from this era. To me his work exemplifies the best of 1970s design – a blend of quality commercial and studio pottery. His forms are so skilfully designed and made, and his use of glaze, surface and texture add to the beauty of these forms.

Below is a piece of Smith’s work with the DS cypher which he used 1969-1973.  Sometimes you can find this popular form with the Doulton stamp too – meaning it was produced a little later when Derek was with Doulton.

Derek Smith - Doulton Australia Bottle

Derek Smith –  Bottle Form

There is also a FLICKR page which has examples of Derek Smith’s backstamps or cyphers HERE if you are looking to date or identify a piece of work by Derek Smith.

Derek Smith - Blackfriars Pottery, Lidded Jar

Derek Smith – Blackfriars Pottery, Lidded Jar – Photo Shapiro Auctioneers Sydney

Derek Smith 1976 Studio Piece

Derek Smith 1976 Studio Piece, photo Shapiro Auctioneers Sydney

Derek Smith, Studio Bowl

Derek Smith, Studio Bowl

Derek Smith - Tall Cylindrical Form

Derek Smith – Tall Cylindrical Form.Photo from Australian Pottery at Bemboka website.

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Eric Juckert, Australia

Eric Juckert  1918-2004, Australia

Eric Juckert was a prolific Australian Studio & Commercial Potter and Artist/Painter who had studied with Una Deerborn in South Yarra, Melbourne. He worked as a potter and painter from around 1949 to 1992 in Victoria.   His pottery was also sold by the department stores Myer and David Jones under the trade name “Jacqueline”.

It is worth reading a well researched biography on his life on the Australian “Rameking” blog HERE  . A selection of his work showing the wide variety of styles he produced can also be seen at the local museum in Cowes, Victoria.

Juckert was a highly skilled potter, and well respected amongst his peers both nationally and internationally. I especially love his use of expert use of glaze colourants and surface texture. Even the smoothest of his glazes have a luxurious, tactile quality about them.

The pieces you will probably come across most often by Juckert in Australia are the small bottles with impressed circle designs, and the white “splatter” glaze commercial ware.

Eric Juckert Bud Vase

Eric Juckert Bud Vase with impressed circles and crackle glaze

Eric Juckert - Bud Vase

Eric Juckert – Bud Vase with impressed design

Eric Juckert - Bud Vase, Manganese Glaze

Eric Juckert – Bud Vase, Manganese Glaze, Impressed Circle Design

Eric Juckert Bud Vase Detail

Eric Juckert Glaze Detail

Eric Juckert Signature

Eric Juckert Signature

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Arabia Ruska – Ulla Procope

Arabia Ruska – Ulla Procope

Ulla (Ulrika) Procope (1921-1968) worked in Arabia’s art department at the same time as Kaj Franc, Kaarine Aho, and Goran Back. Initially she trained with Olga Osol in the hand painting department at Arabia, after graduating as a ceramicist from the Central School of Arts & Crafts in Helsinki. She worked at Arabia from 1948-1967.

Ulla was a skilled wheel thrower who understood how clay worked, and her outstanding design skills along with the ability to create production models, contributed to the success of Arabia in the 1950s and 1960s.

The Ruska range which she designed for Arabia Finland in 1960 became one of the best selling lines in their history. Its production was continued into the 1990’s it was so popular. It has become a Scandinavian design classic.

It was the first time Arabia  had used a matte glaze for mass produced utilitarian ware. Ruska had a handcrafted look and feel to it, with the glaze colour and mottled appearance turning out slightly differently on each piece.

Arabia Ruska Teapot

Arabia Ruska Teapot

Arabia Ruska Milk Jug Creamer

Arabia Ruska Milk Jug Creamer

Arabia Ruska - Large Coffee Cup

Arabia Ruska – Large Coffee Cup

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