A look at the design, market and legacy of Victorian pottery

Sunday, May 8, 2011

Desert Island Majolica

Did you ever play the Desert Island game with majolica?

The basic premiss is this:
If you were alone on a desert island with only five pieces of majolica, which five pieces would you choose?

Assuming there were other vessels available for practical uses like drinking and eating, the choices would purely be based on aesthetics.
It's an interesting thing to consider. For most collectors there's no such thing as too much majolica so trying to choose just five things to represent your interests in majolica is quite a dilemma.

For myself I think I would have to start with a Minton teapot. In my opinion Minton made the most fabulous teapots of any manufacturer. There are so many lovely ones to choose from but for me the favorite would be the classic Minton monkey.

There are other teapots that are rarer and some that are more elegant, but for me the Minton monkey personifies the color, whimsey and ingenuity that made me love majolica in the first place.

My second choice would be another Minton piece, the Minton beehive cheese keeper. This one was a slightly harder choice to make because there are other cheese keepers I like almost as much, like the George Jones Waterlily cheese stand.

My third choice would be the George Jones Punch bowl. I just love this piece, especially with the orange bowl.

For a jardiniere I think I would choose the Brown, Westhead Moore passion flower. I can't really explain why I like this piece, I just do.

My final choice would be a Minton piece, the Minton mermaid center. From the moment I first saw this piece I fell in love with it. It just struck me as so lovely, so elegant and a great example of Minton's figural work.

That's it! It's a hard game to play as there are so many wonderful designs out there that I like just as much.
Ask me in six months and I may choose five different pieces but for now this is what I'd pick.
How about you?

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