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'Porphyry' vase: C.121-2015

Object information

Awaiting location update

Titles

'Porphyry' vase

Maker(s)

Factory: Wedgwood
Designer: Wilson, Norman

Entities

Categories

Description

Earthenware, moulded and thrown, decorated with coloured oxides, glazed and gilded.

Vase, krater shape (flared bowl standing on a convex base) with small scallop-shaped lugs. The outside covered in flecked brown and grey, resembling porphyry, with gold outlines around the base, neck, scallop lugs and gadrooning at the base of the bowl. The inside is undecorated cream, and glazed. The underside has a narrow foot-ring, within which it is glazed and rises to a small, central vent hole.

Notes

History note: Unknown before Sir Ivor and Lady Batchelor, St Andrew's, Fife. On loan since 2006.

Legal notes

Given by Sir Ivor and Lady Batchelor

Measurements and weight

Height: 17.7 cm
Width: 13.6 cm

Relative size of this object

13.6 cm17.7 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

  • Barlaston ⪼ Staffordshire ⪼ England

Acquisition and important dates

Method of acquisition: Bequeathed (2015-04-27) by Batchelor, Ivor, Sir and Lady

Dating

Third quarter of 20th Century
Elizabeth II
1958 CE - 1962 CE

Note

In the 1950s, Wedgwood’s experimentation with glazes was lead by Norman Wilson (1902-85). Wilson learned his trade working in his father’s china works while studying at North Staffordshire technical College, where he won a silver medal and, later, lectured. He joined Wedgwood as Works Manager in 1927, and became joint Managing Director a few years before his retirement in 1963. His main contribution was in the technical modernisation of the factory, but he also created decorative glazes (including the matt glazes used by Keith Murray and John Skeaping), contributed to the design of successful tableware series and created his own of ‘Unique Wares’ which explore forms and experimental glazes, sometimes using several glazes on a single pot.

This vase revisits Josiah Wedgwood’s introduction of classical vase forms and ‘porphyry’ or ‘pebble’ glazes, in the 1770s. Alongside variegated wares produced by mixing clays or trailing or painting coloured slips, natural stone was imitated by sprinkling powdered oxides onto the biscuit ware or, perhaps, onglaze. By 1772 Wedgwood claimed ‘upwards of 100 good forms’ of such vases. Most of these early examples were gilded and produced in pairs with matching plinths.

Components of the work

Decoration composed of oxide colours glaze
Decorating

Materials used in production

Earthenware

Techniques used in production

Throwing : Earthenware, moulded, thrown, sprinkled with oxides and glazed
Moulding

Inscription or legends present

  • Text: WEDGWOOD
  • Location: Underside of base
  • Method of creation: Impressed
  • Type: Mark
  • Text: 11 Z 58
  • Location: Underside of base
  • Method of creation: Impressed
  • Type: Mark

Inscription present: 'WEDGWOOD' printed in blue, remainder inscribed

  • Text: WEDGWOOD / ‘PORPHYRY / GREY PEBBLE No 3 / VASE S/S 4868 SHAPE
  • Location: Underside of base
  • Method of creation: Rectangular paper label, printed in blue, inscribed in black
  • Type: Label

References and bibliographic entries

Identification numbers

Accession number: C.121-2015
Primary reference Number: 205005
Batchelor number: none
Entry form number: 648
Old object number: AAL.121-2006
Stable URI

Audit data

Created: Tuesday 4 August 2015 Updated: Wednesday 15 July 2020 Last processed: Sunday 21 March 2021

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) "'Porphyry' vase" Web page available at: https://data.fitzmuseum.cam.ac.uk/id/object/205005 Accessed: 2022-10-04 18:58:04

Citation for Wikipedia

To cite this record on Wikipedia you can use this code snippet:

{{cite web|url=https://data.fitzmuseum.cam.ac.uk/id/object/205005 |title='Porphyry' vase |author=The Fitzwilliam Museum|accessdate=2022-10-04 18:58:04|publisher=The University of Cambridge}}

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https://data.fitzmuseum.cam.ac.uk/api/v1/objects/object-205005

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