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April 09, 2013


Aimee Newell

Hello Graeme: Thanks so much for reading our blog and commenting. These pieces are definitely fascinating - and ripe for more research! I think you are quite right that the upside-down square and compasses may have been created by someone who was not familiar with the symbol. Your comments remind us that these were commercial objects made in quantity for sale - just because they were handmade doesn't mean they weren't done in a hurry! Thanks again for these thoughtful comments. Aimee Newell, Director of Collections

Graeme Marsden

The inside art of the upper bowl is interesting in that the square and compasses is upside down, at least according to convention. This cannot be so that it's the 'right way up' for someone quaffing from the bowl, because the surrounding art is not reversed. Dare we surmise that the art was created by a worker who was unfamiliar with the Craft? I'd say this is likely, because there are similar errors and discrepancies in other Liverpoolware/Sunderlandware. They were highly commercialized commodities of their day.

The jug is interesting, too, in its lackadaisical craftsmanship.You can clearly see how the black transfer prints were added, in part lying over the magenta background.It can't have been easy to apply these wet prints, but the way it has been done suggests the hurried output of a piece-worker.
But it definitely has charm!

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