17 April 2015

Web Watch 3 - The "Rameking"

As the site name "Rameking" might suggest, this excellent Australian site is all about that mid-century icon, the ramekin - ( primarily a one handled ceramic dish used for baking and or serving of food).

The focus of the site is on the Australian Studio Art Ramekin, with international makers occasionally. Each entry is thoroughly and accurately researched, and always such an informative read. Make sure you also read the right hand side bar entries on the Origin of the Australian Art Studio Ramekin" and "Modern Ramekins".

There are also many gems to be found in the comments sections, where readers sometimes contact the site to provide some fantastic incidental and historical background information.

Check out the ever growing repository of information on the "Rameking" HERE

Above/Below: "Isobel" Ramekins - Australia 1960s - my own collection

14 April 2015

Palissy Staffordshire, Regatta

I noticed this very smart 1950s looking cup and saucer as part of a small set recently at an auction, but forgot to go back to bid on it!  The motif reminded me of the iconic Johnson Brothers "Sailing" design.

This set was made by Palissy Pottery Ltd (1946-1989) Staffordshire - a maker of decorative and utilitarian earthenware pottery.  It is obviously a design from the 1950s - sailing scenes were an often used motif during this decade.

The design is called "Regatta" and appears to have been released in 4 colours - this luxurious cherry red, a baby blue, and an intense yellow (called golden), and a deep green - all equally striking in their impact. The shapes are elegantly 50's, and remind me a bit of the Midwinter shapes of the same era.

Going by the amount now available, the red seems to have been the most popular, and the yellow blue and green variations much harder to find.

Do you have any Regatta ? - I would love to see some more photos of it.

Palissy Regatta Trio - Red

Palissy Regatta Red, via H is for Home on Flickr

Palissy "Regatta, Golden" via TWGaze.co.uk


12 April 2015

Auction Watch 156

The auctions are back on starting today after a 1 week break over Easter - there is quite a bit on offer, but not much in the way of quality mid-century or Danish in good condition unfortunately for me...but here are some things that caught my eye:

Some great patterns on these mostly Staffordshire cups.

A lovely Braemore-Carstens set of mid-century vases - but
quite worn and crazed which is a pity.

2 fantastic large Lapid pieces.

Above and below: some of a number of very smart looking
Moorcroft pieces on offer.

Add caption

2 great looking enamelled pieces.
3 x Villeroy & Boch "Cadiz" design - 2 damaged, but good as spares for someone I guess.

Japanese Fukugawa tea service  - Fukugawa is a quality porcelain maker from what I have read.

01 April 2015

Biltons Staffordshire Dinnerware, The Hind Collection Powerhouse Museum Sydney

I found the Staffordshire design below on a dinner set recently at an auction (but didn't buy as it was together with a whole lot of awful stuff I didn't want!).  The maker is Biltons who were located in London Road, Stoke, Stoke-on-Trent. From the 1950s until closure they were mass producers of tableware.

The colours and boldness of this design stood to me straight away - it appears to be from the mid 1970s going by the font style and backstamp etc. It reminds me of the Kilncraft stamp of the same era.

(Excuse the poor quality photos - they were taken with my phone in poor lighting).

It would be great to know the designer and what else they designed, but designer attribution from this era is hard to come by.

The Powerhouse Museum in Sydney has a fantastic collection of over 100 plates with similar bold patterns from this era, donated by Melbourne Artist John Hinds (b1950) in 2012. The Hind collection ranges from Kathie Winkle for Broadhurst, to Denby, Wedgwood, Midwinter etc. It also incudes a number of Biltons designs I notice.

From the Powerhouse entry for the John Hind collection comes the following background:

"Initially intended to form part of his multi-media artworks, these plates reflect Hinds' personal taste and interest in 'retro' tableware patterns of 'everyday' production lines popular in mid-century Australia. While the 1950s and 1960s were dominated by British imports from firms such as Broadhurst, Biltons, Wedgwood and Midwinter, it is the dishwasher-friendly Japanese stonewares, often in more dramatic darker colours from firms such as Mikasa, Casual Ceram and Suzukastone that rose to prominence during the 1970s and 1980s. These were supplemented by a limited range of usually more affordable local offerings from Johnson of Australia and from New Zealand's Crown Lynn, Kelston Ceramics and Genuine Ironstone. Hinds would often buy his plates from Melbourne's Camberwell Market but also from second hand shops and garage sales"
You can see quite a few photographs from the John Hinds collection on THIS Powerhouse search page

At the time of writing this, there are 61 Biltons pieces on Etsy from this era, and the design below really caught my eye, (from THIS Etsy store)

FYI, The timeline below is from The Potteries.org on Biltons, Staffordshire.

1900-1912 Biltons Ltd
1912-1986 Biltons (1912) Ltd
June 1986 bought by Coloroll Ceramics
Aug 1990 became part of Staffordshire Tableware following management buyout of Coloroll
Sept 1994 put up for sale by Staffordshire Tableware
July 1995 management buyout from Staffordshire Tableware
Aug 1998 bought by Dubelle Foundation (offshore investment trust) split into Stoke Potteries Ltd. (manufacturing); Stoke Potteries (Holdings) Ltd.; and Biltons Tableware 1998 Ltd. (sales)
Jan 1999 in voluntary liquidation

29 March 2015

Auction Watch 155

A bit of a quiet week again in terms of interesting ceramics up for auction here in Adelaide...I managed to find a few traditional but lovely bits and pieces though:

Although it doesn't show up well in the photograph, the pattern on this Aynsley ( UK) dinner
set is quite lovely.

...as is the design of this Susie Cooper coffee set in the Kestrel shape.

Several pieces of T G Green Cornishware on offer this week. These small spice jars are always popular

I haven't seen this shape before - a T G Green Cornishware Coffee Pot

A very colourful set of (Czech?) egg cups.

Some very attractive old spice tins from a shop display.

..and finally a Susie Cooper "Glen mist" creamer.

26 March 2015

West German Pottery Art

I recently learned about the British Artist Joseph Lilley in a post on Mark Hill's, UK site. Its quite a while since I have posted about an Artist using vintage pottery as an inspiration - and in a series of prints of West German pottery Joseph Lilley has nailed the mood, feel, colours and textures of this iconic style of pottery.

Joseph used a Risograph machine to produce a series of 18 A3 prints which were presented in an exhibition at the Showcase Gallery (Birmingham, UK) February 2015. Each print is a 7-colour print, with editions of 20 per print.  You can read more on Joseph Lilley's site here.

The use of a Risograph gives the prints a part photocopier and part digital screen print feel which has a real resonance with the West German lava style. If you aren't familiar with the Risograph machine- you can read more about it on Wikipedia here

West German Pottery Risograph Print
 Copyright Joseph Lilley

West German Pottery Risograph Print
Copyright Joseph Lilley

West German Pottery Risograph Print
Copyright Joseph Lilley

West German Pottery Risograph Print
Copyright Joseph Lilley