|Mason's and Other Stone China|
The "Table and Flower Pot" pattern was well established in the Masons catalog by the 1820'...
The "Table and Flower Pot" pattern was well established in the Masons catalog by the 1820's when a new generation of more elaborate shapes was introduced, in contrast to earlier, simpler forms. This delicate pedestal sauce tureen must have posed some challenges for the straightforward still life and border formula of "Table and Flower Pot." The Masons potters adapted the pattern by using the border around the edge of the scalloped lid, repeating the oriental study on both the softly ribbed bowl and lid, and of course displaying an oval version of the study on the undertray. Continuing in the less austere spirit of the shape, the piece is finished with small animal head handles on each side and a scroll profile knop, all executed in cobalt with gilt detail.
Despite the changes made to adapt the pattern to a more organic form, the appeal of the "Table and Flower Pot" pattern is preserved. The print, executed in taupe transfer displays an array of oriental objects highlighted in multiple enamels -- green, orange, yellow, pink, peach and slate blue. When such objects were depicted in the Asian patterns that inspired Mason's designers, they carried symbolic meanings that had been lost long before reaching the Midland potteries. The resulting still life is intriguing, if more than a little baffling. A baton or scroll case seems to float behind a prominent vase of peonies. The free-form table seems to have been constructed from a gnarled tree root. We recognize the bowl of fruit, but is the nearby duck a figurine or, more bizarre, a live duck in attendance? Some sense of normalcy is established by the attractive border of blossoms among scalloped patches of fretwork decorating the edge of the lid and undertray.
Mystery, in any case, does not seem to have dampened enthusiasm for one of Mason's best known patterns.
|Mark:||Backstamp, round crown, all three pieces|
|Dimensions:||Height 6 3/4 in.; length 7 1/4 in.,; width 4 7/8 in.|
Masons "Table and Flower Pot" can be found with a variety of marks, but the most character...
Masons "Table and Flower Pot" can be found with a variety of marks, but the most characteristic examples show marks prior to the introduction of the "angled crown" mark around 1840. Current scholarship dates the crown and banner mark on this piece from the 1820's through the 1830's, However, Geoffrey Godden illustrates examples of this pattern on similar 1820's shapes as used here dating the pieces 1820-1825 (Godden's Guide to Ironstone, Stone & Granite Wares, plate 60, p. 121).