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.