|Mason's and Other Stone China|
With a boldness that surprises us, given the medium scale of the piece, this Mason's Irons...
With a boldness that surprises us, given the medium scale of the piece, this Mason's Ironstone Vase rises from its foot only to swoop dramatically inward and then outward with a flaring collar that opens to embrace the heavens. In a spirit that declares excess is impossible, graceful swan-neck handles are added to accent the concave curves of the collar. Appropriately, the collar is enameled in strong tones of cobalt, deep green and Chinese red--that recall the Imari palette--with a chevron line that echoes the dramatic downward plunge of the rim. Touches of gilding accent the border and add faces and feather details to the swans.
Below on the body of the vase a more placid calm reigns. We have a variation on the traditional Chinese "Temple" pattern with pagoda, river, islands, and Asian personages on an arched bridge. The scene, more typically executed in monochromatic blue, is executed in tones of green, orange and yellow enamel over fine puce transfer lines. The scene is a familiar one in British porcelain and pottery, but seldom given the punch supplied by the Mason pottery.
|Mark:||Rounded crown backstamp|
|Date:||C. 1830s - Mid Century|
|Dimensions:||Height 8 in.; width 4 1/2 in.|
|Condition:||Fine; medium gilt wear; slight firing line in one handle
Modern viewers tend to associate Asian design with sleek, clean forms, forgetting the cent...
Modern viewers tend to associate Asian design with sleek, clean forms, forgetting the central role of "Chinoiserie" motifs in the European rococo style. During the nineteenth century revival of interest in the rococo, no disconnect would have been perceived between the simplicity of the temple landscape and an exuberantly elaborate curved and flaring form of this vase. What is perhaps a bit atypical for Masons is the use of a shape more influenced by the contemporary wares of Derby And Rockingham than by the traditional wares of the far east.