Weekly Auctions of Exceptional Items
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DoneSat, Mar 23, 2019 2:00 PM GMT
Sparks, MD, USA

March 23 American Stoneware & Redware Pottery

Featuring 518 lots, our first auction of 2019 presents an exciting and diverse group of ceramic objects spanning over 200 years of production--from simple 18th century stoneware vessels produced in Manhattan to the highly-expressive face jugs of Georgia folk artist, Lanier Meaders, made in the last decades of the 20th century. This sale presents a clear, unbroken history of the evolution of American utilitarian ceramics from household wares to self-aware decorative objects. One legendary work embodies this transition in a single object: The Anna Pottery High Water Flask. Made in 1884, it illustrates, in both its execution and elaborate inscriptions, the role of the potter throughout history, to create something both useful and beautiful. Also combining a utilitarian form with the imaginative sculpting of a true artist is a recently-discovered Edgefield, SC face jug, regarded as one of the greatest to ever come to auction. Foreshadowing the rise of pottery as a highly-respected art form in America, today this work is emblematic of an ever-growing interest in Southern decorative arts. From a very different place and time is the Peter Machett 1812 ring flask, which survives as a testament to the artistry of Manhattan's early stoneware makers. (Two siblings by the same hand are considered some of stoneware's most iconic: the Elizabeth Crane 1811 punch bowl owned by the American Folk Art Museum, and the Henry Edoson 1804 flask, in the Weitsman Collection at the NY State Museum.) Other highlights include two magnificent NY water coolers, one by Albany-trained master, Calvin Boynton, another by Cortland's Madison Woodruff, while a young man working in nearby Homer. A newly-discovered 1846 redware tea canister by Mercer, PA's Ezra White is the long-lost brother of an example in the Esmerian collection, and related to a pair at Colonial Williamsburg. And a Pittsburgh advertising jar by Alexander Boughner displays brushwork worthy of any folk art collection. -