International studio — 15.1901/​1902(1902)

Page: 48
DOI issue: DOI article: DOI article: DOI Page: Citation link:
License: Free access  - all rights reserved Use / Order
1 cm
The Potters Art


is to be found a portrait of “ Bonnie Prince
Charlie,” or a Jacobite motto, e.g. “Audentior
ibo ”; or, again, the countenance of a popular
hero, like Admiral Iveppel, may be engraved on
the drinking vessel of a devoted adherent, but
these are rare. Inscriptions indicative of personal
predilections, such as “ No excise,” occur some-
times ; coats-of-arms and masonic emblems are
more frequent. And though the fashion may not
be one to revive, the examples shown in group 6
may fitly be included in an article treating of the
artistic aspect of our ancestors’ drinking glasses.
Each of the three glasses in this group is equally
interesting—the one engraved with a ship is inscribed
“ Success to the Lyon Privateer,” and carries us back
to the days of licensed piracy, when “ Portobello
was not yet ta’en ” ; the centre glass is adorned
with the device of a burning heart and an ardent
sun, with the motto “I elevate what I consume” ;
while the third bears the Jacobite emblems, in this
case without a motto. These specimens are chosen
not only for the emblems on the bowls (others
even more interesting to the antiquary might have
been figured), but as illustrating also the infinite
variety in form which is so conspicuous in the
glasses of the last century, so lacking in those of
to-day. Even if we do not care to proclaim our
political sympathies on our wine-glasses now, surely
the days of baluster stem and bell bowl, of air
screw and gilded decoration are not past for ever?
There are good examples still to be found as

models, and there are surely plenty of skilled
craftsmen in the land, if we will but revolt
against the cast-iron mandates of the tasteless
fashion which is responsible for the mechanical
insipidity of most of our table-glass to-day; and
surely it is not too much to hope that the
cheering revival of artistry in our other crafts
and manufactures, from porcelain to silver, from
furniture to books, may extend to our glasses.
The material cries aloud for the artist to use it;
the models are before us, and the supply will
create the demand.

Percy Bate.


It is evident to those who closely follow the
changes that are taking place in the manufacture
of the better classes of earthenware that a
revolt has set in against objects depending for
their sole interest upon the painted decoration
applied to them. The true art of the potter, for
long almost entirely lost sight of, is becoming
better appreciated as it is more fully understood,
and the most successful productions of recent
days are those in which the potter, by the
happy choice and manipulation of his clay
and glazes, and his thorough understanding of
the mysteries of firing, has rendered himself
independent of the painter, or of any other
collaborator. But a short while ago it was
popularly considered that all objects used for
service in the house should, without discrimina-
tion, be decorated with painted flowers and
birds, and other naturalistic ornament. Furni-
ture, screens, pottery, and even mirrors were dis-
figured by professional and amateur decorators,
and the same motifs were repeated by the same
process, irrespective of the material to which they
were applied. A grosser travesty of art could
scarcely be imagined. Pottery, metal and wood
have each a style and character of decoration
uniquely their own, which are as uninterchangeable
as the materials themselves; but the details of
each class of design may be subject to an infinity
of variation.

The art of the potter is as different from that of
the metal worker, the glass blower, or the carpenter,
as can well be imagined, and each and all of them
are absolutely independent of the painter.

By an examination of recent productions by such
artist-potters as Delaherche, Bigot, Chaplet,
loading ...