Monday, March 30, 2015

A Family Tea Party in Earthenware

Monday, March 30, 2015
Tee Total Family Group
Loretta reports:

A recent visit to the High Museum of Art in Atlanta  offered disappointment on one hand and delightful surprises on the other.  The disappointment was in discovering that the one floor I wished to visit was closed for refurbishing.  From the ramp, we had tantalizing glimpses of 19th C European works as well as boxes filled with paintings and other items under wraps.

The delightful surprise was a charming collection of18th and 19th C ceramic works, which included this family party.

The card information was sparse, and I know next to nothing about Staffordshire work, but diligent searching led me to a similar group at Case Antiques
The latter has sustained some damage while the High Museum’s “Tee total” seemed to be in pristine condition (but obviously we were not examining it under a black light, so it might have been repainted)—as were some other pieces I will show at another time.

Here it is again at the V& A.

For an entertaining and informative overview of Staffordshire figures (including this charming scene), I recommend you spend a few minutes reading Touching the Past: Staffordshire Figures 1780 to 1840.

*"Figural Group, ca. 1820**, Earthenware, Staffordshire Factory, Staffordshire, England.  Bequest of Mrs. Norman Powell Pendley, 1988.148.1"

**Other sites cite an 1830s date or "early 19th century."


Mary O'Keefe Kellogg said...

The V&A link interestingly has two photos: one of another "Tea Total" group (although with stronger colouring), and the second, where it is paired with a companion piece "Ale Bench." So not just harmony in the home (a good, moral, victorian theme!) which could be a gift, but also, for those interested in hammering home (sorry) the point, a painted stoneware version of those well-regulated home vs. drunken disorderly ale house caricatures they liked so well!

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