Tuesday, January 6, 2009

Handcrafted European Inkwell - #A0609199


SOLD -3:10PM 1/7/09
This beautiful reproduction inkwell, inspired by historic European examples, measures 8.5" long (bird tail tip to bird tail tip) and 5" tall (top of birds head). The rectangular base; slab constructed and joined together features applied roping swag, dainty slip trailed florals, and two small openings for feather quill pens. (The goose feather pen shown is included with purchase.) Sitting on the base is the sander cup and the ink cup. These two separately thrown removable redware containers have simple highlights in museum yellow and manganese that beautifully complement the overall design. Also, perched at the top back corners are two hand sculpted birds decorated in museum yellow and manganese slip.


The front panel was elegantly designed using a technique that adds a separate embellishment. The date "1768" is actually a distinct separate piece that has been permanently attached. This piece was formed, applied, coggled, and then painted with museum yellow slip. The right and left panel have an applied roping swag that has also been painted museum yellow and coggled as well.
When viewing the back of the inkwell, you'll find a fitting inscription that reads: "The two most engaging powers of an author: new things made familiar, and familiar things are made new." This can be attributed to Dr. Samuel Johnson, 1709-1784. He was a giant in literary history and this piece would have been quite at home on his desk.
To enhance the authentic antique feel, our master redware pottery artist: Christopher Woods decided to use his limited stock of locally mined mustard slip in the decoration of this piece. To finish his "Unique of the Week" piece, his special "dirt glaze" was used to illuminate the entire inkwell with tiny manganese dots – a beautiful touch.
     Overall, Chris combined multiple redware decorating techniques and clay construction methods to lay the foundation for this inkwell's unique artistic personality. For over 15 years, Chris has hand crafted museum quality 17th and 18th Century reproduction redware that fools the most avid antique savvy observer. Even on the bottom of this piece, you'll find the lovely sketch of a bird by his signature. This is truly, a collector's mantle piece.

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