Charles Jasper McLaughlin was born in Covington, Kentucky on 6 June 1888. He studied at the Cincinnati Art Academy in 1905 and later at the Sorbonne in Paris where he trained in painting frescoes and landscapes. For two summers, he studied architecture at Fontainebleau, outside of Paris.
Back in America, McLaughlin worked at Rookwood from 1913 to 1920 (during which time he decorated the bowl shown above) and he his best remembered for his landscape painted ceramics. In the 1920’s, Mc Laughlin moved to Texas where he taught architecture at Texas A & M. While in the Southwest, he developed a fondness for Mexico, eventually buying a home (with painting studio) in Saltillo—a locale which would provide much inspiration for his landscape paintings.
After McLaughlin’s stint in Texas, he returned to Cincinnati and continued studying painting at the Art Academy. In the 1930’s and 1940’s, McLaughlin’s landscapes were exhibited in many fine galleries, including in Philadelphia, New York City, and Cincinnati—where he is considered amongst that city’s finest painters.
The Rookwood bowl above—dated 1919—is “a little landscape” by McLaughlin. With great economy (and confidence), Charles Jasper McLaughlin has captured a tiny scene—flower blossoms floating listlessly on an inky-blue mirror-like pond. France, perhaps?