Molly / Mary Mitchell-Smith

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Molly / Mary Mitchell-Smith

Post by rob s on Tue Apr 12, 2011 4:24 am

I bought this at last sunday's bootsale, she had been sat there on the sellers table a fortnight previous, so I thought I would take her home....  Laughter  I think the signature reads Mary Mitchell Smith, the colour of the clay / pottery is green, never seen owt like before and the glaze does have crazing. Anyone got any clues?

Thanks Rob.

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Re: Molly / Mary Mitchell-Smith

Post by studio-pots on Tue Apr 12, 2011 5:48 am

I've never seen a piece before but there was a Miss Mary Mitchell-Smith, who was working in St. John's Wood, N.W. London during the Second World War. She apparantly made modelled figures and groups so I guess it must be her.

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Re: Molly / Mary Mitchell-Smith

Post by rob s on Tue Apr 12, 2011 6:17 am

Thanks Studio-pots, I've just googled the name but not much joy, I did find one piece of info on Miss mary Mitchell Smith in relation to modelling some cricket figure's, if I've understood this correctly.
Thanks again. Rob Most Excellent

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Re: Molly / Mary Mitchell-Smith

Post by studio-pots on Tue Apr 12, 2011 6:53 am

She is mentioned in Godden - British Pottery & Porcelain Marks but doesn't seem to have continued to work after 1945 so references are going to be few and far between. She may have got married and worked under her new name I suppose.

Whatever it looks a fine piece and I think I would have bought it had I seen it.

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Molly Mitchell-Smith

Post by 22 Crawford St. on Mon Mar 21, 2016 7:29 am





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Re: Molly / Mary Mitchell-Smith

Post by studio-pots on Mon Mar 21, 2016 9:44 am

Do you have anything to tell us about Molly?

Did she mark her work?

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Re: Molly / Mary Mitchell-Smith

Post by dantheman on Mon Mar 21, 2016 9:54 am

looks like Victorian cabinet ware

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Re: Molly / Mary Mitchell-Smith

Post by 22 Crawford St. on Mon Mar 21, 2016 10:13 am

Molly Mitchell-Smith d. 1981 is all I have SP. and that is plagiarized.

Not C19th but mid C20th. Very romanticised and backward looking... 1850 backward? 1800 backward even?

This one signed and dated 1932

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Re: Molly / Mary Mitchell-Smith

Post by studio-pots on Mon Mar 21, 2016 8:23 pm

The references that I've found are a number of similar figures in the Potteries Museum & Art Gallery collection that all appear to have been made during the 1930s and a painting that the same establishment bought from Molly (not by her) in 1962.

I guess that suggest that she lived in the area.

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Re: Molly / Mary Mitchell-Smith

Post by dantheman on Mon Mar 21, 2016 9:23 pm

that would explain the homage to items made inl Stoke on Trent a century earlier

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Re: Molly / Mary Mitchell-Smith

Post by hercules brabazon on Mon Mar 21, 2016 10:19 pm

Is she the same person as Mary Mitchell-Smith?
http://sculpture.gla.ac.uk/view/person.php?id=msib2_1213266599
http://www.worthpoint.com/worthopedia/vintage-studio-pottery-figure-young-512558241
http://www.20thcenturyforum.com/t6679-miss-mary-mitchell-smith

There are also a couple of mentions of her designing for Royal Worcester
http://www.bhandl.co.uk/sales/assets/EX/2010/06/29/EX290610.pdf

With the interesting note "It rather seems that the comments were premature as Henry Sandon suggests in his
guide for Royal Worcester figures that Miss Mitchell Smith designed figures entitled Isabella and Philip (of Spain) for Worcester in 1955, but that they probably never went into production"
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Re: Molly / Mary Mitchell-Smith

Post by NaomiM on Mon Mar 21, 2016 10:45 pm

Could this be the Infanta Margaret Theresa of Spain

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Re: Molly / Mary Mitchell-Smith

Post by 22 Crawford St. on Tue Mar 22, 2016 12:38 am

Yes - I feel a merge coming on.

Sold listings on ebay has a Mary Molly Mitchell-Smith. That piece is definitely signed Mary Mitchell Smith where mine is clearly signed Molly.

Either sisters or she changed her name?

Yes Las Meninas crossed my mind.
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Re: Molly / Mary Mitchell-Smith

Post by NaomiM on Tue Mar 22, 2016 1:05 am

Merged Excellent

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Re: Molly / Mary Mitchell-Smith

Post by hercules brabazon on Tue Mar 22, 2016 1:29 am

She seems to have had a close association with Adrian Allinson (she was the executor of his will) who also did some pottery figures in similar glazes:

http://www.ceramics-aberystwyth.com/allinson-adrian.html
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Re: Molly / Mary Mitchell-Smith

Post by dantheman on Tue Mar 22, 2016 3:01 am

the seated figure with child looks very similar to Rob's piece at the top of this thread

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Re: Molly / Mary Mitchell-Smith

Post by denbydump on Tue Mar 22, 2016 7:19 am

22's piece is clearly marked Mollie.....
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Re: Molly / Mary Mitchell-Smith

Post by studio-pots on Tue Mar 22, 2016 7:43 am

The signatures on the bottom of the pieces in the Potteries Museum all seem to vary and some, if not all, have Molly rather than Mollie.

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Re: Molly / Mary Mitchell-Smith

Post by studio-pots on Tue Mar 22, 2016 7:45 am

hercules brabazon wrote:She seems to have had a close association with Adrian Allinson (she was the executor of his will) who also did some pottery figures in similar glazes:

http://www.ceramics-aberystwyth.com/allinson-adrian.html

It was a painting by him that she sold to the Potteries Museum in 1962.

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Re: Molly / Mary Mitchell-Smith

Post by 22 Crawford St. on Tue Mar 22, 2016 9:04 am

If it helps



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Re: Molly / Mary Mitchell-Smith

Post by studio-pots on Tue Mar 22, 2016 9:25 am

Having looked at the signatures on the bases of the ones in the Potteries Museum again, I think they say Mary

http://www.search.staffspasttrack.org.uk/details.aspx?ResourceID=19282&ExhibitionID=19283&PageIndex=1&KeyWord=molly mitchell smith&SortOrder=2

although in the text below she is referred to as Molly.


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Re: Molly / Mary Mitchell-Smith

Post by studio-pots on Tue Mar 22, 2016 9:28 am

I can't believe they are not by the same person, just at different times during her career.

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Re: Molly / Mary Mitchell-Smith

Post by 22 Crawford St. on Tue Mar 22, 2016 9:29 am

I'm thinking the handwriting is the same. Might be many years apart but looks same person to me
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Re: Molly / Mary Mitchell-Smith

Post by studio-pots on Tue Mar 22, 2016 9:30 am

22 Crawford St. wrote:I'm thinking the handwriting is the same. Might be many years apart but looks same person to me

Yours seems to be the earliest.

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