October 16, 2016

Lyngby Tangent

What a stunning, crisp and effective design.  This is Lyngby Denmark, "Tangent" design - I was lucky enough to find a few pieces of it last week.

It's designer was Bent Severin who designed it for Lyngby in 1963. It was a design within a series called "Danild" - with each pattern being created by a different designer.

Bent Severin (1925-2012) was a well known Danish Architect, who is best known for having designed several hotels in Denmark including Hotel Hesselet, Nyborg(1967), Hotel Kongens Ege in Randers (1967), the interior refurbishment of the Hotel Kong Frederik in Copenhagen (1968) and Radisson SAS Scandinavia Hotel (together with Ejner Graae , 1971-1973).

He has also designed glass series for Holmegaard .

As you might notice, the design is based on the pattern of piano keys. Breathtaking and highly effective simplicity,

You can read more about Lyngby Pottery in a previous post I did HERE

October 12, 2016

Figgjo Lotte Trivets

Its the first time I have had these. I was sure I had them previously, but apparently not.

This design, if you haven't seen it before is the hugely and still popular Lotte design, from Figgjo Norway by Turi Gramstad Oliver, designed in 1960 and in production for over 20 years. 

The whimsical characters of Lotte really stand out when on a large flat plane like on these pieces.

These perfectly flat pieces are sometimes used as wall plates, but were probably designed as Smorbrikker (a flat plate for open sandwiches etc). 

I managed to get a number of them, and have put some in my Etsy store (just click on first picture in the RH page column)

You can read more in a previous entry about LOTTE which I have posted HERE, or just click Lotte on the side menu to see all entries about Lotte designs. 


October 5, 2016

Arabia Finland Aamu

I was lucky enough to find a number of pieces of this lovely Arabia Finland pattern recently.

The design is "Aamu" and was designed by Esteri (Essu) Tomula (1920-1988) and was in production 1971-1973.

Such a simple and beautiful design, and so effective in both its boldness and use of that intense blue on white.

A bit of background about the work of Esteri from an earlier blog post:

Essu had a long career with Arabia Finland for 40 years, and produced many designs that are now highly collectable. She started with Arabia in 1947 after graduating from the School of Applied arts (specialising in porcelain painting). She started in the hand painting department and soon moved to the department of applied arts. In the 1960s her designs were also printed on coffee and other enamel ware made my Finell Enamel.

Essu was inspired by the flora of Finland – which was a great match for the illustrational traditions and techniques of the 1940’s and 1950’s. Her technique was often to work with delicate black outlines which were made into transfer prints and then hand painted with areas of colour, easily apparent in designs such as Pastoraali.

When Arabia got its own facility for screen printing onto ceramics in the early 1960s Essu moved to the product development department and became a pattern designer there. Her style became more colourful and open with the freedom this technique enabled.

Tomula’s output at Arabia was vast, and she produced over 150 designs including:

The Botanica-series (1978-89), Primavera (1970-74), Sinilehti (1970-74), Elsa (1971-72), Irina (1971-72), Mira (1971-72), Ansa (1971-72), Vanamo (1973-74), Aurinko (1973-74), Gardenia (1973-74), Varpu (1971-73), Helluntai (1971-73), Aprilli (1971-73), Marja (1973), Vegeta (1966-early 70's), Rosette (1983), Sinikello (1984-87), Raita (1971-73), Katrilli (1975-77), Kartano (1973-76), Krokus (1978-79), Flora (1979-81), Polar (1978-85).

Her collaboration and work with other the other 2 powerhouse designers at Arabia - Kaj Franck and Raija Uosikkinen - went a long way in developing what we now recognise as an “Arabia Style” and made Arabia Finland one of the most popular and collectable brands of domestic ceramics.

September 29, 2016

1970s Thomas/Rosenthal Germany, Scandic

This stunning coffee pot and milk jug was made by Thomas of Germany from the "Scandic" range, designed by Hertha Bengtson 1917-1993 (form) and Hanns Welling (decor) in 1970. I love the rounded/dome shaped lids and clean lines of the Scandic series - which had a huge number of patterns and colour variations.

A comprehensive history and guide to the backstamps of Thomas before it was completely absorbed in to the Rosenthal Group of Germany can be found HERE

To me these strong colours represent some of the best elements of 1970s design, with its bold clean designs, and of course the use of the colour orange - which no era seems to have embraced more.

September 23, 2016

Herluf Gottschalk Olsen - Denmark

I have been able to identify a mystery stoneware studio piece which Ive had for years - thanks to Maike on Instagram. Maike has had pieces by this maker in her Etsy store previously, but somehow I had missed seeing them. 

Work by accomplished and experienced potters always stands out from the rest - and this is no exception with its rustic but refined charm, expert use of glaze, pattern, motif and skilled wheel throwing. It has a cream colours, brushed underglaze, with a deep turquoise overglaze - and the pattern as been drawn in the overglaze to reveal the colour beneath. 

The potter turns out to be Herluf Gottschalck-Olsen 1915-1968 (Aged just 52).

There is very little information on the web about this potter, except that he worked for a reasonable time at Stogo Pottery (which was formerly Mørkøv Ceramics) founded in 1940 by Peter Hansen. It closed in the mid 1980s. I have had Stogo pieces previously, but never linked the two.

I'm unsure at this stage whether the pieces simply signed G O like the large bowl I have below are from Herluf's own studio, or whether he produced them while at Morkov/Stogo under his own name as was often the practise. 

Some of the Stogo pottery pieces have the cypher of Herluf Olsen as well as the Stogo mark. They produced a variety of stoneware studio and domestic pieces.

Herluf Olsen Bowl -  via DanishMood Etsy 
Herluf Olsen/Stogo Lamp - via DanishMood Etsy
Herluf Olsen Lamp Base - GO and Stogo mark
Photo via DanishMood Etsy. 

If you are familiar with this Danish Potter, or know any more about his work or life I would love to hear from you direct (contact tab) or in the comments below. 

September 8, 2016

Moira Pottery, England

From time to time I come across lovely earthenware or "creamware" pieces of pottery by Moira Pottery, England. Pictured are 2 pieces I found last year.

Moira pottery was originally founded in 1922, and is still well known for its domestic or utilitarian earthenware which started with jam jars, and progressed to its well known "Hillstonia" range which was made from 1934-1972 . It also produced salt glazed stoneware, beer steins, and stamped/branded domestic ware of many types.

The pottery was located near Burton-on-Trent in Staffordshire and mined its own clay on site. Moira is often (and seemingly incorrectly) documented as having closed in 1972 by a National Coal Board compulsory acquisition. (It sat on a valuable coal seam, which is often next to a clay seam)

From snippets of information I have come across it seems the original Moira location was closed, but Moira then either re-openend or operated at a nearby location until the mid 1980s when it closed and the site possibly became a textile factory. 

The Victoria & Albert Museum also has 2 pieces of Moira salt glazed stoneware pottery in its collection, made in 1981. You can see one of them on the V&A site HERE.

The beautiful clay used by Moira pottery was very plastic in nature and beautiful for throwing as well as enhancing glaze colour and surface, and was also used by other potteries such as that at Albrighton.

The beautifully plastic characteristics of the Moira clay differentiates it from lesser quality creamware - in the jug I have pictured below you can still see the concentric rings from its throwing because it held shape so well.

If you know more about the later history of this pottery, or even worked at Moira I would love to hear from you.

August 28, 2016

Gutte Eriksen, Denmark

A lovely little beaker form by important Danish Potter Gutte Eriksen (1918-2008).  I recently re-discovered this piece in a small box of Danish studio pottery I had stored a few years ago. At the time I didn't know the maker - but pottery from an accomplished hand always stands out, even the humblest of pieces - so set it aside.

The glaze and surface of each piece is what stands out about Gutte's work to me - and because she spent time with Bernard Leach - and I think the simplicity and robustness of his work (as well as a Japanese influence) shows through in her work.

I have only ever had or seen in life one other piece by Gutte,which I wrote about HERE

Her work is usually signed either with a "G" cypher which looks like an ear, or simply "Gutte" in script.

August 17, 2016

HAK Kahler Denmark, Pin Dish

From time to time I see Kahler (HAK) Denmark small stoneware dishes like the one here I found a while ago. The designs of these small objects is not the refined, typically Scandinavian style you normally associate with this maker.

They are generally around 10cm in diameter - slightly larger than a "pin" dish. Sometimes the designs are simply glaze splashes or splatters like on this piece, and sometimes they have more developed hand painted designs. They make attractive group displays if you manage to get hold of a few.

No two appear to have the same design, and they all appear to have been made as one-offs - perhaps for sale to visitors in the Kahler pottery shop when the pottery was running in Næstved until the 1970s.