This week we are sharing pieces from our collection of George Clews "Blue Chameleonware" Art Deco ceramics made in England in the Twenties and Thirties.
The first George Clews products in 1906 were utilitarian in nature—mostly teapots. One of their groundbreaking (and profitable) designs was an Art Deco cube-form teapot in which the handle was recessed into the cubic shape of the pot and the spout was formed out of the opposite corner. This cubic shape allowed the teapots to be packed snugly together, a practicality in the hotel, restaurant, or (especially) the cruise line trade. Clews supplied these square teapots and tea services to the Cunard Line for use on their passenger ships—practicality and efficiency meet streamlined Art Deco modernity.
The creative force driving the company was "Works Manager" David Capper who was a glaze master and tastemaker for the company. (More about him in the days to come.) He was the artist who moved the company to diversify—away from a strict reliance on utilitarian wares, in pursuit of a middle class customer seeking affordable, decorative art pottery.
The sensuously tapering bud vase, shown above, shows one of David Capper's glazes at-work. A variegated cornflower blue underglaze is streaked with an organic, moss green top glaze. The clean, streamlined Art Deco shape is softened with the naturalistic and randomly-applied color. Though modest in size, this vase would stand well alone or as part of a larger collection of blue or green pottery.
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