Recently, two long-time customers visited, interested in adding another piece of English Art Deco "Chameleonware" to their collection of other pieces, purchased from me in the past. While they perused the collection, I decided it was time to shoot the nicest pieces and make them available in the LEO Design on-line shop. Over the next several days, I will be sharing a few of these most interesting pieces.
The George Clews company was founded in 1906 in Staffordshire, England—"Ground Zero" of the British ceramics industry in the English Midlands. The region, sometimes called "The Potteries" is more formally known as "Stoke-on-Trent"—a confederation of six pottery-manufacturing towns including Burslem and Tunstall (both of which the George Clews Company inhabited at different times). But Clews was not an unknown family name in the world of English pottery. In the early Nineteenth Century, James and Ralph Clews were in-business, making blue and white transferware tableware at the "Bleak Hill Works" in Cobridge (near Burslem).
The early Twentieth Century incarnation of the family company, George Clews, actually was run by George's son, Percy Swinnerton Clews and business partners, including David Capper who would be the driving creative force in the company (and, especially, in the development of their wonderful glazes and painted designs).
The handsome egg-form vase, shown above, was made by George Clews in the Twenties or Thirties. A nicely hand-painted "Indian Flame" pattern captured the period's interest in all things "Oriental." In this case, an Indian aesthetic (inspired by an earlier Persian influence) was the starting point for this range of decorated wares—painted in mottled blues and varying shades of brown.
Click on the photo above to learn more about this piece. Or click here to see an assortment of Chameleonware pieces currently on-offer in the LEO Design on-line store.
More Chameleonware pottery tomorrow and in the days to come.
Though our Greenwich Village store is now permanently closed, LEO Design is still alive and well! Please visit our on-line store where we continue to sell Handsome Gifts (www.LEOdesignNYC.com).
We also can be found in Canonsburg, Pennsylvania at The Antique Center of Strabane (www.antiquecenterofstrabane.com).
Or call to arrange to visit our Pittsburgh showroom (by private appointment only). 917-446-4248