Monthly Archives: August 2011

Shoshona Snow Ceramics


Shoshona Snow in her studio.


New York based Shoshona Snow has a Bachelor’s of Fine Arts in ceramics and claims she is inspired by designs from the mid 19th century to the mid 20th century. She states she loves clean lines and colours and this is obvious in the vivid clarity that her pieces exude. The juxtaposition of her black and white elements against her bold colors seems to make the colors have a greater presence. Her pieces are truly handmade as she also makes her own clay and glazes. Her porcelain  animal sculptures are brilliant with their abstract style and animated appearance.

Shoshona’s artistic statement :   ” Growing up in a family of antique dealers and collectors fueled my obsession with objects from the past. I am constantly looking at ceramics from all time periods and all regions of the world. My goal is to create work that is inspired by the past, but with a more modern sensibility. I also enjoy finding lines, shapes and patterns in nature. Animals and plants provide endless inspiration. ”

” I am very interested in the ritual use of handmade ceramic objects and I want to create a sensory experience for the user. I use a technique called sgraffito to produce not only a tactile quality, but a very graphic quality as well, that allows me to emphasize particular shapes and add visual movement to the piece. The hand carved lines contrast the sometimes rigid, modern forms and help me add detail to every small, overlooked space, like the bottoms of each piece. I strive to find the place where nature and modern design meet, and where my love of pattern and ornamentation can become part of the clay instead of a layer on top.”


Shoshna Snow giraffe

Ceramic Giraffe figurine – Shoshona Snow




Modern Porcelain Vase black and white stripes - Shoshona Snow

Shoshona Snow sgraffito vase

Shoshona-Snow black and white vertical striped sgraffito vaseMod Porcelain Vase – Shoshona Snow

Thrown on the potter’s wheel, painted with black slip (liquid clay) and then carefully carved to reveal the white porcelain beneath. Glazed with yellow and a thin layer of glossy clear over the black and white. The carving continues right onto the bottom with  Shoshona’s signature “s” and snowflake. Could also be used as a cup!



Shoshona Snow vase with 4 handles and striped sgraffito with olive green panels

Shoshona Snow vase



Shoshona Snow art deco style cups

Art Deco style porcelain mug cups – Shoshona Snow



Shosona Snow ceramic sgraffito cat in black and white

Shoshona Snow sgraffito cat vase



Shoshona Snow black and white female sgraffito figure vase or decanter

Sleek Porcelain Art Nouveau Inspired Lady Vase

Shoshona’s description :

A modern, abstract version of and old fashioned, fashionable lady.  This piece was cast from a basic mold, BUT then altered to make it more lady like. Glazed with a “peacock” on the inside and some outside highlights and then clear over the black and white. It can also be used as a decanter.




Ceramic Chicken Bowl in black and white sgraffito and red and orange by Shoshona Snow

Shoshona Snow

The piece was slowly dried and then painted with black slip (liquid clay) and  carved to reveal the white porcelain beneath. It has been glazed with tomato red (this is not a primary red, it has a bit of orange to it) and has highlights of orange and blue. There is a thin layer of clear glaze over the black and white. The carving continues onto the bottom with the  signature “s” and snowflake.




Leaf Platter Shoshona Snow

Leaf Platter- Shoshona Snow



Ceramic Fish Tray by Shoshona Snow

Abstract Fish Tray – Shoshona Snow



Shoshona Snow Teapot in green, black and white sgraffito

Porcelain Teapot




Jazz Vase Shoshona Snow-456x342.jpgMod Porcelain Jazz Vase – Shoshona Snow




Shoshona Snow green and orange fish bowls

Shoshona Snow fish bowls




Snowflake Jewellry Shoshona Snow

Snowflake Ceramic Jewelry



Carved Porcelain Cereal Bowl by Shoshona Snow

Carved Porcelain Cereal bowl

This is made from gray porcelain , painted with white slip (liquefied clay) and then carved. With an interior purple color.



Ceramic Illama figurine by Shoshona Snow

Mod Llama Sculpture




Shoshona Snow sgraffito tray in black and white with red and yellow

Shoshona Snow




Modern-chick-bowl-BLUE-black-white by Shoshona Snow

Shoshona Snow chicken bowl




Modern-FISH-serving-bowl-tray by Shoshona Snow

Shoshona Snow fish shaped serving bowl




Shoshona-Snow-ceramics sgraffito owl vase with orange eyes

Sgraffito Owl – Shoshona Snow




Shoshona-Snow-sgraffito bowl

Shoshona Snow



Shoshona-Snow-ceramic-art porcelain science fiction tray

Ceramic sgraffito tray by Shoshona Snow

This is from a series of trays based on  40’s and 50’s Science Fiction comics.

It was hand built out of a slab of fine (and fussy) porcelain. The piece was slowly dried and then painted with black slip (liquid clay) and carefully carved to reveal the white porcelain beneath.

Shoshona Snow’s blog



Ceramic Clocks

  ILEA ceramics electric wall clock ILEA ceramics wall clock



Green bakelite mantle clock

Jade green bakelite mantle clock


maroon-mantle clock lamp

Maroon mantle lamp clock


Demand for clocks and wrist-watches have generally changed due to the use of cell phones and computers to keep track of time. There was a time when the decorative clock was the focus point in the house. As a decorative piece, the display of mantle/wall clocks probably peaked around the period between the two Wars. Indeed up to the middle of the 19th century, a clock was an expensive object because its clockwork was hand made.Their possession was thus reserved for the elite. In the Twenties a significant industry of the faience clock was developed in Belgium and North of France. ( Faience is a glazed non-clay ceramic material that is composed mainly of crushed quartz or sand, with small amounts of lime and either natron or plant ash. This body is coated with a soda-lime-silica glaze. )

Rare Antique French Faience Majolica Clock blue and whiteRare antique French faience Majolica clock


These clocks became the feature display in the home and took pride of place on the mantelpiece. They were quite often accompanied with two sidepieces, vases or cups. Alarm-clocks started to be produced industrially around 1850; but it was only at the beginning of the twentieth century that clockworks, manufactured in the Black Forest and France, became really cheap. Ceramic (faience) was then the inexpensive “plastic” material in the ceramic producing areas and it was chosen to dress these clockworks.  Hence clocks became visually appealing and affordable to everybody.  The clock shapes of that period  sometimes recalled that of middle-class bronze or marble clocks; some beared animals or peoples sculptures; others referred to the Art-Deco architecture or to Greek temples. Their decorations were also infinitely varied, often very colored, sometimes extravagant. Some imitated marble or stone, others refered to modern decorative styles, to Chinese or Dutch porcelains, to traditional tableware or to avant-garde modernistic painting.

France was very instrumental in popularizing the Art Deco style of that era in the design of the mantel clocks. In France, Belgium and Czechoslovakia there were several ceramic factories that specialized in the production of these mantel clocks. After the WW2  the popularity of the ceramic mantel clock declined due to its labor intensive production costs and the mass production of the wrist watch.



Clock with ceramic face Aqua Blue Burst Diamond Desk Clock by Mark's Studio

 Aqua Blue Burst Diamond Desk Clock with fabulous ceramic clock face by Marc’s Studio



Handbuilt ceramic clock by Lisa Pritchard Ceramics free standingHandbuilt ceramic clock by Lisa Pritchard Ceramics. The work is predominantly slab built with molded additions.




Ceramic face clock with Arabic script

This 13-inch square ceramic face clock is an excellent example of the ‘cuerda seca’ tradition. This tradition was introduced to Spain by the Moors at a time when all three major Western religious groups inhabited Spain peacefully. The Arabic character on this clock reflects the Muslim part of this tradition. Each piece is hand-decorated by Spanish artisans using the same techniques as have been used since the 15th century.



Wittenberg ceramic mantle clock with full moon night landscape

Wittenberg ceramic clocks




wittenberg ceramic mantle clock

Wittenberg ceramic clocks



Ceramic antique clock CJCC clock company rococo ceramic

Elegant ceramic antique clock in the rococo style.

This little clock was made by the CJCC clock company of Columbus Ohio.

It is made of ceramic and is beautifully painted and enameled in soft blues and gilt on a slightly off white body.



Blue crackle clock by Sarah McCormack

Mollymitten mantle clock

Small blue handbuilt ceramic clock by Sarah McCormack. Multi fired to acheive crackle effect with addition of gold lustre on arms .




Art Deco style mantle clock. Designed and made by Malcolm and Russell Akerman of Echo of Deco.Handmade ceramic wall clock in an Art Deco style. Designed and made by Malcolm and Russell

Akerman of Echo of Deco.




Art Deco Ceramic clock by Echo of Deco amber and green mantle

Echo of Deco ” Landspeed ” clock



Ceramic clocks art deco from th Clockarium

A collection of ceramic fasience Art Deco clocks from the Clockarium Museum in Belgium.




Mid century style Whimsical Slate Blue Clock by Eileen Young

Whimsical Slate Blue Clock  by Eileen Young

 Hand-made ceramic clock using hand-cut porcelain tiles.




Art Deco Faience Clock from the clockarium

Fasience Art Deco clock from the Clockarium




 English Coalbrookdale porcelain clock rococo turquoise mantle time piece

 English Coalbrookdale porcelain clock. Circa 1830

Gavin Douglas Antiques




Antique mantle clock of girl holding a child next to the fireplaceCeramic clock styled to look like metal.



Green Pillow shaped ceramic clock by Creativewithclay

Pillow shaped ceramic clock by Creativewithclay



Sarah McCormack.whimsical mantle clock

‘Blue House Mollymitten’ – Sarah McCormack.

 Ceramic Clock Hand built from earthenware clay in 3 parts middle section and lid lift away from base.

The piece was fired 3 times finishing with a lustre firing of bright gold.




Vintage Cartier 1930 Art Deco Clock

Vintage Cartier 1930 Art Deco Clock




ceramic electric pineapple wall clock

Pineapple wall clock



Art Deco Clock Amber Custom Scientist by Echo of Deco

Amber Custom Scientist clock by Echo of Deco


blue and white porcelain castle clock with twin towers

French Clock 1893



Sirenes clock RENE-LALIQUE glass face with naked sirens

Rene Lalique ‘Sirenes’ Clock – 1928



Cronulla Pottery wall clock abstract face

Wonderful abstract clock from Cronulla Pottery



French art deco mantle clock gold colour

French Art Deco pottery clock – Saint Clement

( DecoDave )


Porcelain Kewpie Clock - Rose O'neil - green and white facade

Antique Porcelain Kewpie Clock – Rose O’neil , Germany


Mid Century wall clcok 60's

Vintage 60s General Electric Wall Clock Mid Century Modern

( Retro Re Run )



Vintage Holland Mold Porcelain Clock peach, white and green

Vintage Holland Mold Porcelain Clock, Mercedes Wind Up Movement – Germany



Classic German Art Deco Wall Clock in green and white

Classic German Art Deco Clock – 1920’s

( Art Deco Collection )



Deep pink rococo antique clock by Watbury

Waterbury Porcelain Clock  –  circa 1900

Antique French mantle clock with floral face

French ceramic mantle clock

( )

Ian-Roberts footed yellow ceramic crackle mantle clock

Ian Roberts

1895 Ceramic Clock Sothebys Pair of blue and white lions

1895 Ceramic Clock


August Walther & Sohne "Windsor" green glass clock

August Walther & Sohne “Windsor” green glass clock


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V & A Museum Ceramic Galleries refurbish

V and A refurbish

The Victoria and Albert Museum’s collections span two thousand years of art in virtually every medium, from many parts of the world, and visitors to the museum encounter a treasure house of amazing and beautiful objects.

The refurbishment of the Victoria and Albert Museum’s ceramic galleries has created an important national and international centre for the enjoyment, understanding and study of ceramics and a collection that is unrivalled anywhere in the world.

Six  years ago, over concern for the security of the collection, the V&A’s Ceramics galleries closed to the public. Purpose built in 1909 for the display of the Museum’s ceramics collection, the galleries had changed very little over the years and the old cases and displays no longer met modern museum standards or audience expectations.

In 2005 the V&A began the task of funding, redesigning and redisplaying the galleries so that once more the world’s most comprehensive ceramics collection could be secured for the study and enjoyment of future generations. This was completed in 2011.

V & A Ceramic gallery in the 50″s





A selection of ceramic pieces in the Victoria and Albert Museum:


Fritware with underglaze

Fritware bottle painted in underglaze decoration in blue and black. Iran 1500-1600

A   Maiolica ( tin glazed earthenware ) pilgrim bottle made in Urbino, Italy. 1560 – 1580

Gallery location: British Galleries room122g case 2

Porcelain snuff bottles painted in enamel colours, China 1821-1850. Snuff was powdered tobacco

mixed with aromatic herbs and spices.

Gallery location: Ceramics Study Galleries, Asia & Europe, room 137, case 14, shelf 8

Staffordshire  teapot, solid agate ware with lead glaze 1740 – 1750.

British Galleries room 53a case 1

Minton and Co. Maiolica dish made at Stoke-on- Trent, 1866

Gallery location: British Galleries room 125b case 2

Chinese Handan stoneware decorated in black under a turquoise glaze, 1300-1400. this design was influenced by Syrian ceramics.

This elegant vase appealed to George Salting (1835-1909), a passionate collector who bequeathed to the Museum a large number of Chinese ceramics. When Salting bought this piece it was already more than 400 years old. The Chinese had always treasured ancient ceramics, but it was only after the opening up of China to the West after 1840 that antique items became available to other collectors. The appearance of these hitherto unknown objects on the British art market inspired artists to create new forms and patterns.

British room125c, case1

Staffordshire earthenware bowl and bottle with moulded decoration and stained lead glaze.1760-1765

De Morgan Pottery

De Morgan earthernware vase painted in lustre. 1888-1898.

De Morgan’s passion was for the arts of the Middle and Far East.  He drew virtually all his inspiration from the richly-coloured, lustred and ornamented wares of Persia (Iran), from the ‘Isnik’ wares of 16th century Turkey and from Renaissance Italy.

De Morgan gave a very clear account of his method of lustre firing in a lecture given in 1892.  This, simplified, describes mixing metallic oxides, such as copper or silver, with white clay, to which was added gum arabic to make handling it easier. This was painted on and the ware was packed closely in the kiln, fired at a low heat.  At the critical moment, dry material such as sawdust was introduced into the kiln and, once fired up, the kiln is shut down closing off all oxygen.  This smoke-filled environment is known as a ‘reducing atmosphere’.  The effect is to leave an iridescent metallic deposit on the surface, which must be cleaned and polished once the ware has cooled.

Christopher Dresser designed ceramic vaseWilliam Ault Pottery glazed eathenware vase designed by Christopher Dresser. 1892 – 1896

British Galleries room125e, case 2

See more Christopher Dresser here

Shropshire eathernware Vase V and A museum

Shropshire earthenware vase 1889 – 1891 Designed by Walter Crane

Elizabeth Fritsch, ‘Optical Pot’, stoneware, height 311mm, width 232mm, 1980. Museum no. C.13-1981

Royal Doulton Vase 1879

Royal Doulton Earthenware Vase 1879 ( Lambeth ).

Tin-glazed earthenware, painted

Tin-glazed earthenware, painted. Bristol  1720 – 1730

Ewer 17th century Iran

Ewer, 17th Century Iran

Bowl – Charles Vyse -1950

Stoneware, carved and glazed

Jug – 1620 – England

Tin-glazed earthenware, painted

Ruskin Pottery Vase

Stoneware, with a high temperature flambé glaze

Turkish Lamp – 1557

Vase with lid – design Allen Thomas

Minton Pottery – 1855

Walter Crane – 1901

Victoria and Albert Museum



Australian Potter Jeff Mincham


” I’ve always thought of myself as living in a landscape, perhaps its because I’ve never lived in a city or even a town for longer than a few months. The events of the landscape draw me towards it. My works  explore my engagement with its moods, its changes and dramas. They speak of harsh dry windswept lands, of the shimmering distance beneath brooding skies. A passing moment of mystery and wonderment captured by the eye and embedded in memory.” …   Jeff Mincham, 2007

Jeff Mincham Ceramic Bowl
‘The Floodplain’ – high-walled, multiglazed, multifired ceramic bowl.
Craft Australia in conjunction with Object: Australian Centre for Craft and Design has the award : Living Treasures: Masters of Australian Craft which celebrates the achievements of Australia’s iconic and influential crafts practitioners and is designed to promote the work of Australian artists whose exemplary craft skills that have been recognized by their peers.
The fifth recipient of this  title, Australian ceramicist Jeff Mincham is a craftsperson of the highest order. Since he first exhibited his work in 1976 at Adelaide’s famous Jam Factory, Mincham has continued on with his dedicated practice for over three decades, working, exhibiting and experimenting with techniques and methodologies.
Jeffery Mincham Ceramic Vessel
‘Morning Sea’

His practice, largely influenced by the ancient Japanese technique Raku which he has both taught and followed, depends on temperature and fire. Having worked with this method for near on two decades, Mincham, impressively, moved to another way of working in the mid 1990s, focussing on drawing from the local scenery.

Mincham’s rigorous early training with both Milton Moon at the South Australian School of Art and Les Blakebrough at the Tasmanian School of Art  is evident in his disciplined approach to technique and form. But the maverick spirit which drew him to the highly unpredictable field of raku is alive and well.

Jeff Mincham Ceramic Vase

‘Summer Grasses I’ – thrown, multiglazed ceramic form with brushwork.



jeff mincham raku bowl

‘Edge Of The Tides’ – hand built, multifired ceramic tea bowl.



Jeff Mincham is one of Australia’s most prominent and long established ceramic artists and for thirty years his practice has been influenced by the remarkable landscape setting of his home in the Adelaide Hills.  His beautifully resolved vessels contain a visible dialogue between the artist and the environment in which he lives and works, a narrative that is particularly resonant within the ceramic medium which is of the earth but shaped by human hands.  The highly tactile surfaces of these vessels are the result of a unique patination process that Jeff refers to as ‘firing and weathering at the same time’.  “The colours, moods, textures and events comprise a universe of constant change which retains a seamless, constant identity and provides an inexhaustible source for my forms and their surface treatments.  The works are often fired many times to achieve the depth of surface and unique character that they finally attain and many do not survive the journey.  However, I have survived a long journey myself to arrive at a point of strong resolution in my work and I conclude that it is the constant struggle that produces the best results.”

He has held over 40 solo shows across Australia, and exhibited in the USA, Asia and Europe.  His ceramics have been widely collected and are represented in the National Gallery of Australia and most major state and regional galleries.  Jeff’s work is also held in many overseas collections such as the Aberystwyth Arts Centre (Wales), Johnson Collection (USA), Silber Collection (USA), National Gallery of Malaysia, State of Hawaii Public Collection and Taipei Fine Arts Museum (Taiwan).


Jeff Minchem Vase with contemporary geometric  decoration

‘Day into night’ – multiglazed and multifired elliptical vessel.

From an interview with Karen Finch ( Craft Australia ):  Growing up in a rural environment, he says, conditioned him to deal with the landscape and it remains the most common basis for his work. The impact of Japanese style, techniques and philosophies has influenced the way he looks at the landscape and reinterprets it in clay. He is preoccupied with the mutability of his surroundings, monitoring natural events, how objects grow, die and rot – the cycles and processes of the natural world. The combination of a solid form, most often a vessel form, and a figured surface becomes a metaphor for the idea of shifting changes over an underlying structure. Decorative motifs in his work have gradually become more abstract as he searches for the means to communicate the essence of the landscape rather than use the surface of the form merely as a three dimensional canvas. Textures, colours and varied surfaces vie with each other to create a sense of the inherent conflict between order and disorder within the landscape, conveying messages of emotional communication to the viewer.

Jeff Mincham green Raku vessel

Lichen – thrown, hand built, multifired ceramic bowl.



Pelagic memoire (bowl) by Jeff Mincham

‘Pelagic memoire (bowl)’ – 2009



Jeff Mincham Ceramic Vase

‘First Rains’ – coil built, elliptical ceramic form with carved image.



Ceramic Vase Jeff Mincham

‘Hill Views’ – multiglazed and multifired elliptical vessel.



Textural green ceramic vase - Jeff Mincham

‘Windswept Hillside’ – elliptical carved vessel.



Jeff Mincham contemporary pottery vessel

‘Out of the East ‘- 2012


Jeff Mincham pottery vase

‘Home of the curfew’. 2009



Jeff Mincham pottery planter

‘A Grey Dawn Breaking’ –  Jeff Mincham – 2012

( Sabbia Gallery )



Jeff Mincham-oval-ceramic vassel

‘Estuary’ – multi glazed oval vessel.



Jeff Mincham Australian ceramic vessel




Jeff Mincham australian pottery vessel with abstract motifs

‘Reconstructed landscape I’ – multiglazed rectangular faceted vessel.



Jeff Mincham ceramic vase

‘Transit Variations’ 2012



Jeff Mincham square footed Vase

‘The Marshlands’ – 2009

Jeff Mincham