An exceptional early Worcester vase and cover circa 1752-3

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Lot 15
An exceptional early Worcester vase and cover circa 1752-3

Sold for £ 36,000 (US$ 49,930) inc. premium
An exceptional early Worcester vase and cover
circa 1752-3
The baluster vase strongly modelled as a square section with chamfered corners and a spreading foot, the domed cover with a finial individually faceted to match, the four side panels each delicately enamelled with birds on fantastic rocks or in the branches of willow trees, the larger panels with an additional bird in flight and a group of three swimming ducks, one tiny insect on the shoulder and four further insects on the cover, the neck and cover with borders of half-flowerheads linked by green and blue leaves and red scroll motifs, a further border of flowerhead panels between green diaper forming a band above the foot, 31.5cm (12 3/8in) high (a chip and associated fine crack to the inner flange of the cover only, the cover misshapen during manufacture with resulting polishing to the inner flange and underside) (2)

Footnotes

  • Provenance: sold in these rooms, Phillips 6 June 1996, lot 678. Illustrated by John Sandon (1997), p. 127. In its first few years of production the Worcester factory made ambitious garnitures of covered vases of this distinctive shape together with matching beakers in several sizes. A very similar vase with a non-matching cover, formerly in the Frank Hurlbutt collection, is illustrated by H Rissik Marshall (1954), pl. 5, fig. 85 and also by F. Severne Mackenna (1950), pl. 3, fig. 7. A further garniture of one covered vase and two beakers matching the present vase is illustrated by Marshall as pl. 43, fig. 889. A matching beaker was sold at Sotheby's 12 July 1977, lot 68 and probably this same vase was shown by Albert Amor Ltd., Worcester Porcelain, the First Decade, 1981, fig. 15. The shapes are derived from Chinese forms and were well suited to the dramatic modelling favoured by Worcester at this time. Two further baluster vases of similar shape in a different pattern are in the Victoria and Albert Museum and are illustrated by Rissik Marshall, pl. 54, figs. 1104 and 1106 and also p. 20, fig. 4. Another garniture was in the Stieglitz collection shown at the Art Institute of Chicago in 1947. The same shape was even made in a monumental 57cm size, see the celebrated blue and white example known as the Lyttleton Vase now in the A.J. Smith collection, illustrated by Simon Spero (2006), fig. 20. The lid of the present vase is of the correct date and pattern. It will have been fired separately in the kiln and distortion to the neck of the vase necessitated the grinding of the inner flange which allows the lid to sit correctly.
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