Saturday, December 31, 2011

Fab Flora

What a wonderfully unexpected pattern from Rosenthal. 1950s German porcelain, so heavily decorated in black and gold transfer that the original white china surface just barely peeks through the leafy motif. The pattern is named Malvacea - after a variety of wild poppy of the Hibiscus family.

Matching pair = 13" tall
Above = 11" & 6.5"

Friday, December 30, 2011

Important Imports

Delicate pieces in my favorite tone of blue, that rich saturated color of ultra-glossy glaze, somewhere between cobalt and turquoise. Created by Carl-Harry StÃ¥lhane for Rörstrand, Sweden. 1950's 
8" and 4"

Vases shot atop our vintage Italian garden stool

Thursday, December 29, 2011

Obscure Obelisk

Renown clothing designer Emilio Pucci was one of the first fashion names to know the value of expanding into all forms of style, aside from his famous clothing line, and enter into a creative collaboration with companies outside of the garment trade. One famous commission came in the form of a porcelain line for Rosenthal, started in 1961. Our Obelisk shaped vase is a rare piece, and at over 18", one of the tallest Rosenthal's we have ever seen.

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

A Container for...

The Bitter Tears of Petra von Kant!
This over-the-top cobalt blue and gold lidded box with an Austrian crystal knob by the noted Bavarian porcelain manufacturer Hutschenreuther reminded us immediately of the Fassbinder cult classic of 1972. This embodies the same unexpected mix of Mod/Baroque/Deco opulence as evidenced in the clip below.

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Snooty Ceramic I love the aristocratic attitude this figurine seems to exhibit. Italian, 1950s.

Monday, December 26, 2011

Happy Boxing Day!

Another classic mid century Italian beauty by Aldo Londi for Bitossi.

Sunday, December 25, 2011

Merry Murano Christmas

Saturday, December 24, 2011

Let it Snow!

On Christmas Eve I just had to share a snow flake remeniscent design found on another Bavarian beauty.
10" tall, square shaped vase

Friday, December 23, 2011

Greek Key to Our Hearts

A coffee klatch of drink sets as designed in 1965 by Susan Williams-Ellis at her own self-purchased pottery company called Portmeirion in Stoke-on-Trent, England. The "Greek Key", while obviously an ancient motif, perhaps because her great design, became ubiquitous with mid-century high style. Shown here in partial sets and in three color-ways, a full set offers six cups and saucers. The extra tall carafe (14") became another signature of her work.

Thursday, December 22, 2011

Duo by Barbini

These fabulously fluted vases are classic 50s by Barbini. The pink is a blush confection not unlike cotton candy while the other leans more lavender.
Both around 17"

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Isn't She Lovely

Named Mademoiselle Pogany when it was first cast by Constantin Brancusi in Bronze around 1913, this almost otherworldly female form is found only in museums or the homes of the ultra rich. An original was said to be worth, at the height of the art market, over $100 Million. We were lucky to come across a beautiful vintage homage made of plaster. Marked 1961, our best educated guess would be that this scale (17" tall) reproduction was made for sale at a museum shop during a retrospective of his work.

Monday, December 19, 2011

Missoni Home Heritage

I'm just saying...if Missoni was producing ceramics for the home in the 50s - these would have certainly fit right in. All three are marked "Italy" in hand painted script on the base.
l to r: 10", 16", 8"

Sunday, December 18, 2011

Barbini Genie

A supremely rare version of the Barbini flame stoppered bottle in sea blue/green colored glass, translucent, but for a generous amount of gold.
 23" tall

Saturday, December 17, 2011

Flame On

A dramatic pair of Italian obelisks of faceted crystal with swirls of red/orange flames embedded within...all I can say is h-o-t!
Original Murano foil stickers from the 60s still intact.

Friday, December 16, 2011

Magnificent Opalescence

A  display of glass techniques we don't ever see combined in one piece. Attributable to Fratelli Toso, this stoppered bottle of opalescent glass has been cage-blown for a quilted effect. Impressive in its complexity. The tone is a dreamy mother-of-pearl with a hint of my favorite accent color - turquoise.

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Serving Sugestion

A great gift set for the holidays or an off-the-registry wedding present...a 50s German porcelain espresso set in a kaleidoscopic array of color with a touch of gilt.

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Sexy Saxbo

What really turns us on about this little mid-century Danish beauty from Saxbo is the unusual tiny fitted lid. The glaze is subtle with the faintest hint of celadon green.

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Ice Ice Baby

Mod goes the Ice Bucket with these swinging 60s stunners from Baron Alessandro Albrizzi! Lucite with swivel tops. Great optical effects make these visually stunning for the coffee table or on the bar of your groovy bachelor pad.

The tallest is 7" by 10"

Saturday, December 10, 2011

Tray Chic

An amazing little 50s artifact from Ingrid Atterberg for Upsala-Ekeby. This signed ceramic tray seems like a studio piece, as in unique. There is a great juxtaposition of the earthy rough texture and stark cubist design. The color palette is very mid-century...pale blues, yellow, and a couple shots of red.
12" X 4.5"

Friday, December 9, 2011

Germany Does Chinoiserie

Created in the 60s, this large (21" tall) piece of Bavarian porcelain is a decidedly Pop Art take on a classic Chinese motif, continuing a long tradition of Germany looking to the Asian Empire for inspiration. In fact it was in the early 18th century that the Germans were among the first in Europe to crack the code for fine porcelain production that was for centuries a tightly held secret dating back to the Tang Dynasty (618-907).

Thursday, December 8, 2011


Another example of a 'maquette' or model for a public sculpture in the manner of Henry Moore...that may or may not have been realized at the time. This was purchased from a dealer in Miami where this type of sculpture would look right at home along South Beach. The stucco sculptural forms are set in a speckled travertine base.
8" X 8"

Monday, December 5, 2011

Massive Glass

It's important to stress the very impressive size of this opalescent vase. At 27", this floor vase is among the tallest pieces from American glass manufacturer Pilgrim, circa 1960s. Wonderful winter white and rare indeed.

Elegant Elightenment

This beautiful and unusual example of French mid-century industrial chic comes to us from Zurich and was manufactured by the Mazda lamp company in France circa 1950.

Saturday, December 3, 2011

Window Shopping

I happened to capture an incredibly chic New York woman as she took a moment to appreciate our elegant Christmas window. She was dressed to the nines for an early evening stroll and had to stop to take in the vintage ornamentation.

Friday, December 2, 2011

What a Stud

Upon hearing the term "Rostrato",  the name given to this line by legendary factory Barovier & Toso, one might assume this would be a reference to the thorn of a rose, but the translation from Italian is literally "Beak", as in that of a bird. While the line was originally designed by Ercole Barovier in the late 30s, this lidded jar was made in the 40s or 50s when accessories for the vanity were in still very much in vogue.

Thursday, December 1, 2011

Couture Candelabras

Blackamoor figurines created mid-century from one of the grand old family run glass houses still in operation in Murano, Ballarin - a  factory that literally dates back hundreds of years...established in the late 1400's. Baroque in its intricacy, this pair is a master-study of glass techniques.

The taller candlestick is around 16" in height