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Ground for a tea set: C.22.4-2002

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Object information

Current Location: Gallery 27 (Glaisher)


Ground for a tea set


Potter: Stair, Julian




Grey, slab-built grey stoneware with a smooth surface on the underside, and slightly rough surface on the exterior Rectangular with almost straight sides, and a rectangular area cut away in the middle of the lower edge of each side to form four corner feet. In a set with a teapot and cover (C.22.1 & A-2001) and two cups (C.22.2 & 3-2002).


History note: Purchased by the donors from Egg, 36 Kinnerton Street, London, SW1X 9ES.

Legal notes

Given by Nicholas and Judith Goodison through the National Art Collections Fund.

Place(s) associated

  • London ⪼ England

Acquisition and important dates

Method of acquisition: Given (2002) by Goodison, Nicholas and Judith


Early 21st Century
Production date: AD 2002


Text from object entry in A. Game (2016) ‘Contemporary British Crafts: The Goodison Gift to the Fitzwilliam Museum’. London: Philip Wilson Publishers: Julian Stair is a potter and writer based in London. He studied Ceramics at Camberwell School of Art and the Royal College of Art, London. In 2002, he completed a doctorate in the history of critical writing in the field of studio ceramics at the Royal College of Art and is currently principal Research Fellow at the University of Westminster. His work is characterized by simple vessel forms that explore the ritual and domestic uses of clay vessels through time with particular reference to the English studio pottery movement of the last century. He exhibits, and is collected, internationally and in 2004 was awarded the World Crafts Council European Lifetime Achievement award. Stair now principally works to commission creating site-specific installations that push the boundaries of scale and context of his chosen medium. A touring show, Quietus – commissioned by and shown at Middlesbrough Institute of Modern Art (mima) in 2012, subsequently touring to National Museum Wales, Winchester Cathedral and Somerset House – was the culmination of a ten-year project reflecting on the containment of the human body after death, and included monumental sarcophagi, cinerary jars and moving images. ‘Julian Stair creates an imaginative and intellectual fusion of the diverse histories of pottery: that of use and that of beauty. His works echo the domestic with austere pared-down elegance and simplicity.’ Marina Vaizey, art critic and author. A life history interview with Julian Stair is available at

Components of the work

Minimum Height 6.8 cm Length 27.2 cm Width 22.7 cm
Maximum Height 7 cm Length 27.5 cm Width 23.5 cm

Materials used in production


Techniques used in production

Slab-building : Grey, slab-built grey stoneware with a smooth surface on the exterior, and slightly rough surface on the interior.

Inscription or legends present

  • Text: JS
  • Location: In the centre of the interior
  • Method of creation: In square seal
  • Type: Mark

References and bibliographic entries

Identification numbers

Accession number: C.22.4-2002
Primary reference Number: 82295
Entry form number: 178
Stable URI

Audit data

Created: Saturday 6 August 2011 Updated: Tuesday 8 December 2020 Last processed: Wednesday 24 March 2021

Associated departments & institutions

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

Citation for print

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The Fitzwilliam Museum (2023) "Ground for a tea set" Web page available at: Accessed: 2023-01-31 11:20:33

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{{cite web|url= |title=Ground for a tea set |author=The Fitzwilliam Museum|accessdate=2023-01-31 11:20:33|publisher=The University of Cambridge}}

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