Not Lucie Rie, but v similar, who?

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Not Lucie Rie, but v similar, who? Empty Not Lucie Rie, but v similar, who?

Post by wilbraham5jq March 7th 2023, 7:48 pm

Hi, I am a new member. My mother has 3 bowls given as a wedding present in the 1950s and purchased from Primavera in Sloane Square. She always understood them to be by Lucie Rie, but there is no stamped mark and just a painted initial N. The glaze looks to be brush applied, not dipped. Not Lucie Rie, but v similar, who? Img-2013
Not Lucie Rie, but v similar, who? Img-2014
Not Lucie Rie, but v similar, who? Img-2015
Any ideas? ThanksNot Lucie Rie, but v similar, who? Img-2017Not Lucie Rie, but v similar, who? Img-2018
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Post by NaomiM March 7th 2023, 9:05 pm

Primavera moved to Cambridge in 1959. I wonder if they kept their records from Sloane Square. Maybe best to take the bowls there and ask them.

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Post by wilbraham5jq March 7th 2023, 10:12 pm

Thanks, that's an idea. I live nearby, so can try that.
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Post by studio-pots March 7th 2023, 10:51 pm

Primavera was taken over by Jeremy Waller in 1999 and he had not connection with Henry Rothschild, who started the gallery in London, so I can't see them having anything there. In fact I think Henry left his records to the Shipley Art gallery in Gateshead.

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Post by philpot March 7th 2023, 10:51 pm

Primavera has passed through a couple of hands since Henry Rothschild ran it.
Henry Rothschild's collection and documents are in the Shipley Art Gallery in Gateshead.
I think you are right in thinking they are not Lucie Rie. That type of crackle glaze glazing on the inside is something she did not use I think.
Are you absolutely sure they were bought in Primavera in the 50's? The problem being that there was a small pool of excellent potters in the 1950's. So the selection of anybody at all doing work like this to fit that period and do is quite difficult.
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Post by NaomiM March 7th 2023, 11:09 pm

Did they stock European potters too? Might not be British

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Post by philpot March 8th 2023, 12:46 pm

According to Lucie Rie's autobiography Primavera closed in London in 1971. He opened the Cambridge shop in 1969.
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Post by NaomiM March 8th 2023, 12:59 pm

Cheers. Their Wikipedia is wrong (not surprised Laughter )

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Post by wilbraham5jq March 8th 2023, 1:30 pm

They were bought in 1954. I had understood that were bought from Primavera, but those who would know are no longer alive. Thanks for the recommendations about the Rothschild archive, that is helpful. They were reasonably well used, I don't know if that would account for the crazing/crackle.
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Post by philpot March 8th 2023, 2:03 pm

1954 actually makes it even more difficult to identify anyone! There is Primavera booklet which I have. It  gives an appendix of Potters who showed in specific exhibitions. Not  However the ones in just general stock.
Those who exhibited in 1954 were Paul Barron,Percy Brown, and Geoffrey Whiting. I doubt if it is any of them. Equally there are not many quality European potters that he would stock in 1954.
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Post by NaomiM March 8th 2023, 2:10 pm

The crackle glaze may be deliberate; formed during firing and emphasised by rubbing charcoal into the cracks.

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Post by philpot March 8th 2023, 2:20 pm

That makes it even more baffling Naomi! What early 1950's potters were using that technique?
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Post by NaomiM March 8th 2023, 4:01 pm

True. Maybe someone influenced by Japanese ceramics

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Post by philpot March 9th 2023, 10:20 am

The only potter I can find in the Primavera book with any remote connection with an N mark is William Newland. He used a painted WN mark in 1952. He is a significant potter, but I have never seen anything like this by him before. But his work did vary, and he experimented somewhat
Wilbbraham, have you any idea what clay this might be made of? If porcelain it would be quite light. If earthenware it would be heavier. William Newland nearly almost worked in earthenware.
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Post by wilbraham5jq March 9th 2023, 9:55 pm

Interesting. I will find out and come back to you. Thanks
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Post by wilbraham5jq March 10th 2023, 8:22 am

Hi  They are definitely not porcelain.
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Post by philpot March 10th 2023, 9:40 am

This is probably going to be one of those unknown imponderables. It is both the early date, the place where purchased, the crackle glaze, and the lack of a mark. One tends to forget that in 1953, Britain was still in rationing from WW2. There were just not that many studio potters around then.
Oh, if you wanted to see some excellent Lucie Rie work there is a superb exhibition on at Kettle's Yard at this moment,
https://www.kettlesyard.co.uk/events/exhibition-opening-lucie-rie-the-adventure-of-pottery/
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Post by LisaLan March 10th 2023, 12:31 pm

The Sainsbury Centre website has a pictue of an "early" bowl by Lucie Rie with a crackle glaze. I am sure she was not the only potter using crackle glazes at the time. I came across the technique of staining the crackle lines with metallic oxides and refiring to fix the effect, in the 1960s (from Robin Welch I think), and it was used by David Leach in the 1970s (see p100 of The Craft of the Potter) and he could well have been using it much earlier. I have no suggestions for the N mark.
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Post by wilbraham5jq March 10th 2023, 3:00 pm

Thanks for the suggestion about the exhibition. I hope you enjoy it. My daughter is the curator. She suggested I contacted this forum as she drew a blank as well... I think you are right, we will be unlikely to trace these bowls. I am positive about the date, the place of purchase could potentially be wishful thinking/wrongly remembered by my parents.
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Post by philpot March 10th 2023, 4:23 pm

If the place is uncertain, then another strong possibility might well be the Berkeley Galleries, 20 Davies Street, London It was founded by William Ohly in 1947, and ceased trading in 1977. This was the probably the first gallery to hold exhibitions of Lucie Rie's work holding several in the early 50's. One of first V&A Lucie Rie's pots was a purchase from their 1950 exhibition.
Their areas of interest were much wider than Henry Rothschild's work. Historical and contemporary African and Eastern, work. Other probably vaguer possibilities might be Gimpel Fils and the Redfern Gallery which also showed some studio pottery in the early 50's.
Your daughter must be so proud and excited at curating the Kettle's Yard exhibition.
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Post by wilbraham5jq March 10th 2023, 11:08 pm

Thanks for these suggestions. I will do some trawling. The Rie exhibition was 4 years in the making. Looking forward to seeing it finally!
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