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Collecting Old Continental Pottery
Henri Deux Ware, Etc.
Paris And Its Environs
Glazed Pottery Of France
Stoneware Of Germany
German And Other Guilds
SWEDEN, DENMARK, SWITZERLAND:
Stockholm, Rorstrand, and Marieberg
Delft: The Old Signs Of The Potters
Majolica And Luca Della Robia
Naples, Rimini, Monte Feltro, And Forli
Siena, Monte Lupo, And Pisa
Fabriano, Viterbo, Rome
Venice, Treviso, Bassano, Milan, Etc.
PERSIA AND DAMASCUS:
Persia And Damascus
Persian And Other Tiles
Rhodes, Asiatic Turkey, Etc.
( Originally Published Early 1900's )
Stockholm, Rorstrand, and Marieberg
In the eighteenth century, Sweden had two important potteries, Rorstrand and Marieberg, the latter being now used as a barracks in the city of Stockholm, of which they both form part, Rorstrand being absorbed as it grew. The following information is kindly supplied by my friend, Mr. W. Ofverberg, writing from Lund, October 20, 1912 : " Porcelain and pottery are now made at two factories, Rorstrand and Gustafsberg. Rorstrand was established in 1726, and it was associated in 1782 with the factory of Marieberg, which was established in 1758, but the manufacturing of which was stopped in 1788. These two factories both made household porcelain, earthenware (faience), stoves, and decorative porcelain, vases, etc. From 1820 Rorstrand has also made flintware with transparent glazing.
" Gustafsberg was established in 1827, and made during the first twenty years the same things as Rorstrand. From 1850, Gustafsberg as well as Rorstrand was enlarged and modernised. The speciality of Rorstrand is very fine, real felspar porcelain. Gustafsberg is well known for its parians, mostly reproductions of sculptured works, and for its unglazed Wedgwood. From an artistic point of view the new Swedish porcelain is very much appreciated. At first only glazed wares and false porcelain were made, after Dutch, French, and English patterns and models."
The date of the foundation of Marieberg is given above as eight years later than the year 1750, which is recorded in our authoritics. However, in 1759, Ebcrhard Ehrenreeich, or Ehrenreich, secured its direction under the privilege of the King, being later associated with Wasa in producing ware described, in common with the other Swedish productions, as " curious in form and bright in colouring," which is partially true; but the old Rorstrand faience is in great demand because of its elegance and fanciful shapes, its sumptuous services, and centre-pieces with flowers in relief. For the most part the pieces bear the mark R, script or Rorst, followed by numbers indicating the series.
The Marieberg faience is equally elaborate; the flowers on it in relief are ably handled, and the intricate open-work seems sometimes to be disposed with the object of increasing the difficulties of execution. The productions are marked with MB., joined or not, surmounted by three crowns, or with three crescents, above various initials of the painters and numbers of the designs. The three crescents are also assigned to Rorstrand, but the difference between factories under the same direction is slight, and some pieces have the name " Stockholm," of which city it became a part soon after the establishment of its potteries, for specimens with " Stockholm a Hakan Arigman 1737, made at Rorstrand, show this, and in the marks another instance is given. It is supposed that A ff over B in script was the abbreviated signature of Arfinger, who with Geyers succeeded Nordenstolpe, the first proprietor. It is more probable that the examples so signed, also others with Hobl over B, were produced elsewhere. At Kiel, in the Denmark of the time, before the Dano-German war of 1864 gave it to Germany, Buchwald was the director who used B as his mark, and his B is just like the others given above, whilst dir or directeur was frequently added.
We shall have something more to say of Kiel, but first the decoration common to the Swedish wares demands notice. Rorstrand employed much relief decoration with open-work, imitating silver plate with raised flowers of Dresden style, painted in colours amongst which manganese purple and lemon yellow are prominent. More ordinary faience had pale-blue painting, with retouches in white enamel, upon a white ground with a faint bluish tint. Marieberg adopted similar decoration and added gilding to it. Upon some of its fine plates, with open-work borders, coats-of-arms are displayed, whilst amongst its large vases are those with a reticulated outside wall, in white, decorated with coloured fillets. Remembering that the productions of other countries were copied, the special prominence of reticulated work distinguishes this Marieberg ware from them. It had reserved medallions painted with flowers and fruit on jars with a violet rose as the knob of the cover of each. Dishes with open-work borders, painted with bouquets, as well as others with borders in checker-work, with raised flowerets at each intersection were executed in the style of Niderviller.
Besides these ornamental and useful wares, numerous figures were made at Stockholm: statuettes of women dressed in long robes, holding cornucopias or scrolls, with polychrome decoration; and figures such as " Summer " and " Winter " upon rectangular bases. In the latter the ground is white enamel, and the hair, eyes, and attributes are in colours which are dominated by aubergine. Most of these are unmarked, but a few have the three crescents, and it makes little difference in which factory they were made-they are of Stockholm.
A considerable output resulted from the labours of the director of this Danish factory-Buchwald-whose name appears less often than B, his initial. If you find K above B above L, the last letter signifies Leihamer the maker, who in the mark in the list writes the date of his work, 1763. This interesting mark was found upon a plaque of rectangular form with a frame in relief, and the corners in rococo curves, painted with a marine subject in polychrome. Plates with festooned or open-work borders have also polychrome paintings of insects with bouquets and detached flowers, as well as coats-of-arms surrounded by rich lambrequins. Soup-tureens and various table-wares are ornamented with rococo handles and knobs, painted with bouquets of roses, or of peonies in camaieu tinted, and gilt. Jacquemart says of this faience, " The paste is thin and well worked, the forms are choice and rival those of the goldsmith, whilst as to the painting, it equals in purity the works of Hochst, and surpasses those of Strasburg." This is high praise indeed from such a critic, and when we note the number of artists in addition to Leihamer who also signed their work, we recognise that the factory at Kiel was of no small importance. Amongst these is a K, not for Kiel the town, but the third or lowest letter, the initial of the decorator. Nobody seems certain about " Kunersberg," which some ascribe to a town or village in Sweden or Bavaria. A close search of the map of the period fails to show it in Bavaria, neither does-Baedeker mention it in his " Sweden." Amongst the facsimile marks the name will be found. Probably it is the name of a Kiel painter on faience, perhaps that one who usually signed K. The ware marked Kunevsbevg consists of table ware with centre-pieces and baskets for flowers decorated in polychrome, with paintings of flowering branches and detached bouquets, or with relief designs. The colours are distinguished by the prevalence of pale blue and of yellow, though camaieu violet was also in favour. Another mark is also indefinite. Jacquemart classes it amongst the Swedish, others say probably Swedish. It is a script M.T.T. Now amongst the Kiel initials of the painters is a script T which scarcely differs from the two in the other mark, which occurs on a large dish painted in camaieu blue with garlands, birds, and insects, and a large carnation like those of Moustiers. Probably this piece is Kiel, perhaps painted by the man who signed T.
Switzerland: Zurich and 5chaffhausen
Although some remarkable faience has been produced at Zurich and Schaffhausen, the information regarding it is limited. Probably the early ware dated from the sixteenth century, but no piece of this period has been as yet identified, whilst the names of the old potters still await discovery. Yet much that they made is meritorious. The marriage-dishes, with the coupled coat-of-arms of husband and wife, show paintings little inferior to those of the old glass-painters, being executed with similar precision and neatness. This sharpness of outline, contrasting with the whiteness of the paste, is one of the characteristics of Swiss faience.
Zurich contributed most to the home demand, for in addition to domestic ware, a considerable variety of ornamental ware was made-vases and jardinieres, for example, decorated with reliefs and painted in polychrome. Flowers and bouquets show much skill, though the enamels were rather pale in tone. The usual mark is a Z crossed with a line in the middle, but sometimes a B is placed above the Z. Zeschinger, the painter at Hochst, used a Z as his mark, but the simple Z of the Zurich ware is quite different. A marriage-dish with a double coat-of-arms at the Cluny Museum bears the date 1656.
In the same museum is another large dish which discloses the maker's name and the date of a specimen of Schaffhauscn faience. It has figures in relief upon a brown ground, being covered with a lead glaze. The subject is the tenth Station of the Cross, which is scratched upon the body, together with Gerrit Evevs, Schaphuysen, 1695. Not content with signing his name, he has placed his initials upon the sur face of the dish, G : E : The border is ornamented with a garland of flowers, enamelled in white, yellow, and blue upon the brown ground, in a style which dates from the Middle Ages.
Jacquemart mentions a stove at the castle of Sigmaringen which is decorated with figures painted in costumes of the eighteenth century. This is signed Daniel, Hafner, Stekborn. These stoves appear to have been the speciality of the Steckborn factory; not open stoves, but closed ones covered with tiles which were tin-enamelled. The white surface received its decorative design in colours.