WAISTEL COOPER SELLS FOR £3500 HAMMER PRICE

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Post by croker January 28th 2021, 7:17 pm

hi, having handled a number of waistel cooper pieces over the years i never thought i would see the day when a piece would fetch £3500 on the hammer, I find his pottery ranges from the amateur to reasonably competent with some pieces having a novelty value , many being heavily potted. I think he must have had a trade in smaller pieces for the tourist trade as on a few occasions in the 80s and 90s i found these pieces in mixed lots in auction along with st ives standard ware . .The buyer of the above made a statement in the ATG that without waistel there would be no hans coper.I found this statement ridiculous .
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Post by dantheman January 28th 2021, 8:37 pm

refreshingly honest crocker

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Post by philpot January 28th 2021, 9:37 pm

Waistel is indeed Marmite.
Mind you its all this hot money with nowhere to go and no returns, all looking for a home. The 'Next Big Thing scenario' Two Maltby Lots in David Lay in Penzance today. 54 cms King's Head and bird went for £3600, other one was a fairly ordinary plaque/tile of a lady figure watering a garden. A similar one went for £240 in Adam Partridge last sale, and circa £300 or more on Ebay. Hammer price was £920....
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Post by NaomiM January 28th 2021, 9:41 pm

Trying to make a market that’s not ready for it never ends well. Give me the tortoise rather than the hare every time. Maltby, Batterham, Rogers and Wallwork will continue to steadily climb

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Post by philpot January 28th 2021, 9:53 pm

I wonder if it will be the same with that broad body of work we still call the Leach tradition? Bernard and David Leach have not had any huge surprises. Batterham has gone up somewhat. But Phil Rogers, Jim Malone, and Mike Dodd have stayed fairly static. Maybe one of the problems is that they were all production potters, and have produced a lot of work in a somewhat similar vein? If those last three names start seeing stand standout high prices, then we are in real Bubble Territory.
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Post by metadadaist January 28th 2021, 10:58 pm

This isn't to do with pottery per se, and is completely different to bubbles that many have witnessed, John Ward etc. It's to do with modernism, and the birth of modernism in pottery. I cannot emphasise this enough. Most of the other names people are banding about on this thread have nothing to do with this period bar maybe Wallwork but even he's five to ten years after Waistel and Hans. It's also to do with supply and demand. Far fewer Waistel's appear on the market than almost any other potter by a ratio of about 100/1. Maltby is possibly too whimsical for the serious art crowd, who are not the same people as the pottery crowd, though I suspect his prices will stay buoyant this year particularly. The market can never be flooded with Waistel, and demand is through the roof. I can't buy enough to sell, and I've probably sold 30 Waistel Cooper pots in the past 4 months - I'm the only dealer in the world with any examples for sale. If you went online you could probably buy any of the other potters mentioned from 20 different dealer websites right now, all carrying several examples of their works.

Waistel did do some tourist slipware in the 1950s, it's signed slightly differently to his exhibition quality works and is additionally inscribed 'Porlock', it's quite scarce. Waistel has been the ultimate tortoise for 50 years, we are no where near the peak. My statement in the ATG was in regards to the competition between the two potters which is quite obvious from an aesthetic point of view, and even more prescient when you go beyond this. The problem with many potters is that they didn't date their pots, so unless you dig around in archives like I have been doing for the past six months, and find dated photographs, exhibition catalogues, newspaper reviews, letters, etc., people don't know who did what and when. All this research will be revealed in my forthcoming book on Waistel.
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Post by philpot January 29th 2021, 12:56 pm

Classic of the Art Market in micro- miniature. Laughter
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Post by NaomiM January 29th 2021, 3:34 pm

Phil Rogers, Jim Malone, and Mike Dodd

I think their importance in the Collectors world is exactly in that order. Phil Rogers is internationally known and well respected. I think we'll see a similar cult for his work that grew up around Warren Mackenzie.
Jim Malone has carried the torch for vintage Leach Pottery but he lacked the innovation of Rogers' work and has only really tiptoed into the US collectors market. Similarly, Dodd has also been too conservative. The two of them are only really going to appeal to the brown pot brigade. I would have placed Batterham in here too, but he appeals to the US Mackenzie collectors. I think the recent surge in his prices is because he's practically retired now so his work will have scarcity value until current owners die and their families start having a clear-out, and then there will be a lot on the market in 20-30years time.

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Post by studio-pots January 29th 2021, 4:46 pm

philpot wrote:Classic of the Art Market in micro- miniature. Laughter

....... and very good for the studio pottery world and potters, past and present.

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Post by philpot January 29th 2021, 4:58 pm

But not for the aspiring collector tho...
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Post by NaomiM January 29th 2021, 5:01 pm

The problem with many potters is that they didn't date their pots

I've never understood the interest in the date of a potter's works. I'm only interested in who made it, and you can look up their entry in the marks book (if they have one) and see which decades they were potting in. Does it really matter if it's an early Phil Rogers, or a later Phil Rogers? Obviously some potters went through various decorative styles over the decades - there's Maltby's standard ware; his stoneware; his collages; his statues.... There's Richard Godfrey and John Pollex's early standard slipware and their later highly coloured Art Pottery forms....  but they dont need dates.  If it's a potter potting in the 60-70s period it's usually obvious from the type of clay and glaze they've used. If someone like Batterham has stuck to the same style of pot for 40-odd years who cares when it was made?

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Post by studio-pots January 29th 2021, 5:19 pm

NaomiM wrote:
Phil Rogers, Jim Malone, and Mike Dodd

I think their importance in the Collectors world is exactly in that order. Phil Rogers is internationally known and well respected. I think we'll see a similar cult for his work that grew up around Warren Mackenzie.
Jim Malone has carried the torch for vintage Leach Pottery but he lacked the innovation of Rogers' work and has only really tiptoed into the US collectors market. Similarly, Dodd has also been too conservative. The two of them are only really going to appeal to the brown pot brigade. I would have placed Batterham in here too, but he appeals to the US Mackenzie collectors. I think the recent surge in his prices is because he's practically retired now so his work will have scarcity value until current owners die and their families start having a clear-out, and then there will be a lot on the market in 20-30years time.

I think you are correct in the importance of the 3 potters mentioned in studio pottery collecting circles. However, from my point of view that it more to do with "getting out there" and being seen rather than quality of the work. Also I can't seen any of them joining the Ceramic/Art Market but what do I know. I remember back in the 1990s constantly saying that Lucie Rie's prices "can't keep going up".

However in my opinion, they are not in the same league from an artistic or aesthetic point of view as Richard Batterham or the real master, Bill Marshall.

Regarding Batterham, I found in recent years, even before his retirement, that young British collectors were becoming interested in his work and wanted to buy anything that they could get their hands on. Not because he might stop potting but because they had just discovered him. None that bought from me had any interest in the work of Rogers, Malone or Dodd. He has also since the 1960s regularly supplied a couple of department stores in New York and probably other elsewhere in the States. In the past, other stores in Europe too.

Of all the potters that I have bought things from or exhibition in the past, he was the only one that was VAT registered. So I do think it is wrong to think that he will only appeals to the Anglo-oriental studio pottery collectors market, as Rogers, Malone and Dodd do.

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Post by NaomiM January 29th 2021, 5:29 pm

I used to have an American collector regularly messaging me via FB asking me to ID this and that pot on ebay in case it was a Batterham. I got fed up and blocked him in the end.

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Post by studio-pots January 29th 2021, 5:30 pm

philpot wrote:But not  for the aspiring  collector tho...

Maybe not for the ageing aspiring collector or dealer but we shouldn't really be thinking of ourselves.

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Post by studio-pots January 29th 2021, 5:33 pm

NaomiM wrote:I used to have an American collector regularly messaging me via FB asking me to ID this and that pot on ebay in case it was a Batterham. I got fed up and blocked him in the end.

That's one of the reasons I don't join those Facebook groups. I got "invited" again on Wednesday.

Maybe what you should do is that, if it is a Batterham, explain that you charge $100 + shipping and for that you supply them with a wooden box with a written statement and signature on the side. WAISTEL COOPER SELLS FOR £3500 HAMMER PRICE - Page 2 847164

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Post by studio-pots January 29th 2021, 5:44 pm

NaomiM wrote:
The problem with many potters is that they didn't date their pots

I've never understood the interest in the date of a potter's works. I'm only interested in who made it, and you can look up their entry in the marks book (if they have one) and see which decades they were potting in. Does it really matter if it's an early Phil Rogers, or a later Phil Rogers? Obviously some potters went through various decorative styles over the decades - there's Maltby's standard ware; his stoneware; his collages; his statues.... There's Richard Godfrey and John Pollex's early standard slipware and their later highly coloured Art Pottery forms....  but they dont need dates.  If it's a potter potting in the 60-70s period it's usually obvious from the type of clay and glaze they've used. If someone like Batterham has stuck to the same style of pot for 40-odd years who cares when it was made?

I think Tim was referring to it in the Waistel/Coper context and who might have influenced who.

In other areas it is often straightforward and documented. For example, Rogers, Malone & Dodd all freely admitted to me that Bill and Richard influenced their work.

Your comment about Batterham stuck in the same style for 40 years was through choice and desire, as all he wanted to be was a country potter making a range of functional ware and make a living, so that he could raise a large family. I remember him saying to me once that he wasn't an exhibition potter and never wanted to be. So he did everything that he desired and still most people that want his pots today want to use them rather for them to be precious art objects on a shelf out of harm's way.

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Post by philpot January 29th 2021, 6:06 pm

Prices don't really bother me any more because since we downsized I have not got room for much more. But one of the joys of starting to collect studio pottery was how relatively cheap things were, even for potters near the top tier. That is now changing fast,
I do actually think that the date of a production potter's work does matter. I have had early and later Phil Rogers and Mike Dodd. The quality of their later work is much better. In a different respect you might say the same with Bill Marshall. A lot of people think that in his post Leach career he did his best work, Its much freer and has more soul in it.
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Post by 22 Crawford St. January 29th 2021, 7:53 pm

I've never understood the interest in the date of a potter's works.

Naomi I think that if you studied only one potters/potteries work then you know how rare/not rare something is. We may all look at a particularly nice colourful Maltby thinking it's nice, but an aficionado (no one uses that word any more, why?) who follows all the auctions and sales of John's work may know that he's only ever seen two like that and exactly how it fits in with his body of work. Also many of the potteries that I collect the early stuff is not fully understood, so much has been lost to time and also production was lower volumes as it was smaller and just the main figures were producing, what was made was not recorded. So for example Ambleside, Briglin. I can assure you that a early pieces of these potteries by the main figures will be far more interesting than later mass produced pieces. So early generally does mean it would be more interesting.

It raises an interesting question; are early works from a potter/ry generally finer and perhaps more interesting on the hole than later works simply because they took more care in the early days? Then quality goes down and they stop potting?

I'm sure there are examples of it either ay but generally is this true?
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Post by NaomiM January 30th 2021, 3:54 pm

I guess my point is, if you're a serious collector of a potter's work then you dont need to ask. You'll have done your homework already.

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