Wedgwood Pottery - Keith Murray designs

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Post by tenpot October 20th 2008, 8:34 pm

Keith Murray for Wedgwood

brown/bronze? basalt

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Post by truk10 May 14th 2010, 3:44 pm

He's a few


Wedgwood Pottery - Keith Murray designs P1000312

Wedgwood Pottery - Keith Murray designs P1000313

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Wedgwood Pottery - Keith Murray designs P1000315

Wedgwood Pottery - Keith Murray designs P1000316

Wedgwood Pottery - Keith Murray designs Photo010
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Post by truk10 May 15th 2010, 5:04 pm

Better avert your eyes then Ed

Wedgwood Pottery - Keith Murray designs P1000564

Wedgwood Pottery - Keith Murray designs P1000634-1

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Wedgwood Pottery - Keith Murray designs Picture036

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Wedgwood Pottery - Keith Murray designs P1000235

And Some Glass

*mod note: glass photos removed - this is a pottery thread - please post your Wedgwood glass photos in the Wedgwood thread in the Glass section please*
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Post by truk10 May 16th 2010, 12:40 am

Hi Ed
You're right, he wasn't a potter. But apart from this obvious flaw, he lead a very impressive life. He was born in NZ (one of the reasons I collect his work) but his family moved back to the UK when he was young. During WWI he enlisted and was a fighter pilot of some distinction being awarded the Military Cross and the Croix de Guerre Belge. After the war he trained as an architect and worked on a contract basis for Stevens and Williams, Wedgwood and Maplin and Webb. His designs for Wedgwood are credited with saving the company from bankrupcy in the 1930s and, being an architect, he went on to design their new factory in Barlaston which opened in 1940 and was hailed as a model for modern ceramic production for many years. He worked with Wedgwood up until about 1946 (although his designs were still being produced by Wedgwood up until the 1970s) and then went back to working fulltime with his architectural firm which he'd initially set up in 1936. Being a pilot, one of the firms specialties was the design of airports and in the 1950s he designed Hong Kong airport.

I can see why you say the designs have been done "many times over" and, indeed, if you go to Habitat, Heals or the Conran shop, you can see very similar designs today. But this thing is that he did them first (maybe not in the world but certainly in the UK). He brought modernist design in glassware and ceramics in the UK when everyone else was still trying some to terms with art deco. Remember these designs date from the same period as Clarice Cliff, Susie Cooper and Charlotte Rhead and then ask yourself - which of these designers' work has best lasted the test of time (rather than just being good examples of their period).

But, hey, each to their own. At least I have one less person to bid against.

Wedgwood Pottery - Keith Murray designs 212118
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Post by big ed May 16th 2010, 7:33 am

I am well aware of his achievements and well done, my point is mainly aimed a certain style ( not in the glass ) the celadon green type colour is not to my liking ,that's my entitled opinion , the shapes are certainly not original , a visit to the burell collection will show the romans and japanese were producing the same shapes centuries ago , however I am sure he was influeced by many sources as is everyone , remember it's only my opinion and I am glad we don't all have the same tatse , even If I do like puked on stuff, I am not a traditionalist .
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Post by tenpot May 17th 2010, 8:01 am

Hey kurt those pieces are sublime so glad my little pot is no longer alone tho I may sel lit one day as it doesn't fit with the rest of my collection. Still the old debate about design (remember the pink spoons?) the good west german pottery was done by designers the murray pieces show eastern influence but just try and do it with such perfection.those pieces have real soul which is amazing in factory produced work but then wedgewood has a long history of quality
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Post by truk10 August 10th 2010, 1:46 pm

Here's a very unusual (and very large) Keith Murray vase. I've put it alongside a 7.5inch Football vase for comparison. I've never seen another in this shape - has anyone else?

Wedgwood Pottery - Keith Murray designs P1000934
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Post by andywooders September 10th 2010, 7:58 pm

Hi
I really enjoyed seeing the Keith Murray images. I met his daughter some years ago and had the opportunity to go through his archives-amazing. Her hall wall had several of his drawings from Spain and other places-wonderful woman
andrew
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Post by truk10 September 15th 2010, 11:40 am

andywooders wrote:Hi
I really enjoyed seeing the Keith Murray images. I met his daughter some years ago and had the opportunity to go through his archives-amazing. Her hall wall had several of his drawings from Spain and other places-wonderful woman
andrew

Going through his archives would have been fantastic. I'm always hearing that someone or other is going to write a book on Keith Murray and get all this information into the public domain but it never seems to happen. At least it's good to hear that they are in safe hands until it finally happens.
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Post by truk10 September 15th 2010, 11:44 am

My latest purchase and one I'm very pleased with - a 3753 conical bowl in black basalt. Reference books and the old Keith Murray website state that these bowls were only produced in the matt glazes. Apparently, not so.

Wedgwood Pottery - Keith Murray designs KeithMurrayBowl

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Post by kirkmodern September 22nd 2010, 1:07 pm

Amazing how fashion changes. I have a Christies catalogue from 2005 which illustrates quite a lot of KM and the prices they hoped to achieve. Straw bulbous vase £300-500, large ribbed vase £5-800, black basalt vase £6-900. Tenpot might be interested in a brown basalt vase valued at £1,000-1,500!! I quite like the clean lines flat glaze and have managed to pick up a few over the years. The large white one in the pic I bought for £5 at a antique fair - it had red cherries painted all over with nail varnish!! Someone obviously thought it lacked a bit of colour.
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Wedgwood Pottery - Keith Murray designs Empty Wedgwood - Keith Murray King George V Commemorative Mug 1937

Post by Little Rhoo April 17th 2012, 7:49 pm

This is my first post... very new to this so please forgive me if the information I seek is already common knowledge!!!

I have a Keith Murray George V and Queen Elizabeth 1937 Commemorative mug. I was trying to find out more information about it... Were they produced in bucket loads as they are nowadays? Is it worth anything, I have seen people trying to sell them ranging from £20-£100!!

Is it worth keeping for the future? It's in pretty good condition, no cracks or anything, just needs a clean!!

If anybody can help me with any information, it would be very much appreciated :)

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Post by skay April 17th 2012, 9:19 pm

Welcome Little Rhoo Wedgwood Pottery - Keith Murray designs 124209

It would be nice to see it please Happy

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Post by truk10 April 18th 2012, 1:31 pm

Hi Little Rhoo

They weren't quite made by the buckload but they are not rare either. Sticking my head out I'd say that something in the order of £50 is about right in today's market. As for future potential, I would have to say that it's probably not a great investment. The reason for this being that Keith Murray collectors go for three main things - shape, colour and decoration - and on all three these tankards don't score particularly well I'm afraid. First, this shape tankard is probably the most common peice of Keith Murray that you can find. Second, the tankards are in a white glaze called Moonstone, which is the most common glaze you can find. And finally, collectors don't really like Keith Murray items to be decorated - they prefer the "purity of the shape". For these reasons, people who buy these tankards tend to be collectors of commemorative wares rather than Keith Murray collectors.

So, rather than a future investment item, a strategy might be to cash in on the Diamond Jubilee - all the TV coverage and retrospectives of the Queen's reign that are sure to be shown may well cause a spike in interest for Coronation items.

Hope that helps

Kurt
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Post by studio-pots April 18th 2012, 9:19 pm

I believe Kurt has summed your mug up very well.

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Post by studio-pots April 18th 2012, 9:21 pm

......................... and I forgot to add that it would have been worth more 20 years ago when I was dealing in the stuff.

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Post by Little Rhoo April 19th 2012, 9:30 pm

Thank you so much Kurt for your help.... that is more information that I expected and I think I will take your advice and try and sell it on around the jubilee in June.... better than sitting on my kitchen window sill!!!

Little Rhoo :)

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Wedgwood Pottery - Keith Murray designs Empty A few rare Keith Murray designs

Post by truk10 June 4th 2012, 2:00 pm

A matt green 4321 vase

Wedgwood Pottery - Keith Murray designs P1010117


A straw 4323 vase

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A Bronze Basalt 3868 vase

Wedgwood Pottery - Keith Murray designs P1010116


A Grey 3801 vase

Wedgwood Pottery - Keith Murray designs P1010112

Happy
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Post by andywooders June 4th 2012, 3:50 pm

very nice pieces indeed-do you have a copy of the wedgwood catalogue of all his shapes-I can send you a photocopy if you like-its very interesting

andrew
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Post by truk10 June 4th 2012, 4:07 pm

Hi Andrew

Thanks for the offer - would love a photocopy. PM it to me when you've got a spare moment. All the best

Kurt
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Post by andywooders June 4th 2012, 5:36 pm

what does PM mean?
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Post by andywooders June 4th 2012, 5:37 pm

have you seen/read my chapter on keith murray in my 2002 book?
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Post by skay June 4th 2012, 6:08 pm

andywooders wrote:what does PM mean?

It means 'private message' Andy, you have a message facility at the top of the page Happy

xx

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Nic wrote:A WMF lady exposes her breasts at me every morning when I open the curtains

big ed wrote:Burt lancaster spat on me Sad

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l33ham180 wrote:the wife wants massive

NaomiM wrote:...didn't even have the excuse it was for charity. Just liked his balls. Cheeky

dantheman wrote:I think it's shit


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Post by truk10 June 5th 2012, 12:27 am

andywooders wrote:have you seen/read my chapter on keith murray in my 2002 book?

Is that 20th Century Ceramic Designers in Britain? If so, yes, I have a copy - about the only book with much detail on his work. Leonard Griffins was meant to be writing a definitive book on Keith Murray about 10 years ago. I'm not sure what happened but it never appeared which is a pity.
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Post by tenpot June 5th 2012, 7:04 am

I would never of bought that bronze basalt vase for a paltry 10€ if I hadn't bought that book first
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