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Spill vase with two deer: C.947A-1928

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Object information

Current Location: Gallery 27 (Glaisher)

Titles

Spill vase with two deer

Maker(s)

Unidentified factory
Possibly John Walton (Potter)

Description

Earthenware figure group, moulded and modelled, lead glazed and painted with polychrome enamels.

Earthenware figure group with two deer, one on either side of a tall hollow tree trunk. The tops of the trunk and its two branches are open, forming the spill vase. In the hollow of the tree, a boy sits playing a pipe, his right leg crossed over his left and his hat hung beside him on the trunk. Two lambs sit at the boy’s feet. Behind each deer is a leafy tree with flowers. The scene is painted in bright coloured enamels: the trunks green and brown with yellow interior streaked with brown; the leaves green with blue and yellow flowers; the deer white and buff with spots on the white portion; the lambs white with orange-brown patches; and the boy in flowered shirt, brown waistcoat and blue trousers. It stands on a wide mounded base which is painted green and brown and decorated with applied leaves and flowers, as if fallen from the bocage, and scattered green clumps. The back is flattened, but fully shaped and decorated. The underside of the base is recessed slightly under each deer and glazed inside a narrow foot-rim.

Notes

History note: Captain Reynolds, Tiptree, Kelvedon, Essex. Collection sold to Messrs Gill and Reigate. Bought by Mr Stoner, London, from whom purchased in 1910 by Dr J.W.L. Glaisher, Trinity College, Cambridge. Dr Glaisher paid £20 for the two spill vases, as part of a purchase of 35 figures and figure group.

Legal notes

Dr J.W.L. Glaisher Bequest

Measurements and weight

Height: 25.4 cm
Width: 37.5 cm

Relative size of this object

37.5 cm25.4 cm What does this represent?

Relative size of this object is displayed using code inspired by Good Form and Spectacle's work on the British Museum's Waddeson Bequest website and their dimension drawer. They chose a tennis ball to represent a universally sized object, from which you could envisage the size of an object.

Place(s) associated

  • Burslem ⪼ Staffordshire ⪼ England

Acquisition and important dates

Method of acquisition: Bequeathed (1928) by Glaisher, J. W. L., Dr

Dating

Early 19th Century
Circa 1810 CE - Circa 1825 CE

Note

Earthenware figure groups were popular from around 1810, although the earliest examples date from nearly a century before. A cheaper alternative to porcelain figures, they were generally produced by small potteries and very few are marked. Classical or literary subjects might be copied from porcelain examples, but scenes from everyday life and topical events were also increasingly popular. These early groups are often complex, with modelled and moulded parts and applied decoration; the backs, though flat, are decorated. As demand increased, processes were streamlined to allow cheaper mass production and by the mid 1830s the earlier methods had largely given way to three-part press-moulding.

Spill vases were made to hold tightly rolled scraps of newspaper used to light the fire, as matches were expensive.

This is one of two similarly styled spill vases in the Fitzwilliam collection, one with deer and the other with cows. Similar features such as the overlapping oak leaf bocage, the modelling of the trunk and the boy piper and the construction of the base suggest they may have been made by the same pottery. According to Rackham, this might be John Walton of Burslem, who is often associated with bocage figure groups. However we now know that several potters made figure groups in this style, often copying designs and other features.

Components of the work

Decoration composed of enamels lead-glaze Parts

Materials used in production

white Earthenware

References and bibliographic entries

Identification numbers

Accession number: C.947A-1928
Primary reference Number: 76427
Old object number: 3216
Stable URI

Audit data

Created: Saturday 6 August 2011 Updated: Wednesday 15 July 2020 Last processed: Monday 25 July 2022

Associated departments & institutions

Owner or interested party: The Fitzwilliam Museum
Associated department: Applied Arts

Citation for print

This record can be cited in the Harvard Bibliographic style using the text below:

The Fitzwilliam Museum (2022) "Spill vase with two deer" Web page available at: https://collection.beta.fitz.ms/id/object/76427 Accessed: 2022-08-09 05:46:43

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{{cite web|url=https://collection.beta.fitz.ms/id/object/76427 |title=Spill vase with two deer |author=The Fitzwilliam Museum|accessdate=2022-08-09 05:46:43|publisher=The University of Cambridge}}

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