Important Old Bridge, NJ "Made by David Bissett / December 4th 1819" Stoneware Jar

November 3, 2018 Stoneware Auction

Lot #: 122

Estimate: $2,500-$4,000

November 3, 2018 Auction Catalog

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Exceedingly Rare and Important Four-Gallon Stoneware Jar with Boldly-Brushed Cobalt Decoration, Inscribed "Made by David Bissett / Decemr 4th 1819", Old Bridge, NJ origin, 1819, ovoid jar with heavily-tooled shoulder and open loop handles, decorated with the incised and cobalt-highlighted inscription, "Made by David Bissett / Decemr 4th 1819", underscored by a wavy cobalt stripe. Reverse decorated with a large stylized plant motif featuring round blossoms. Brushed cobalt highlights running along the tops of the handles. Cobalt highlights to handle terminals. A light-brown slip wash on interior. This jar is one of only two known surviving examples of stoneware bearing a hand-incised signature by a member of the Bissett family of potters, based out of the influential early American potting center of Old Bridge, New Jersey. Scholarship on the Bissett stoneware manufactory has traditionally taken a back seat to that of the related, earlier Old Bridge stoneware concern of Morgan & Van Wickle. However, research performed within the last five years by the late Don Carpentier--a Bissett descendant--has ignited a new interest in these potters. Indeed, this particular jar became a key object in Carpentier's research and has become something of a "Rosetta stone," serving as a basis for attribution of unsigned Bissett family objects, numerous examples of which exist. Certainly the finest example known by this prolific family of stoneware producers, and one of the more important examples of New Jersey stoneware to come to auction in recent years. Provenance: A fresh-to-the-market example, purchased by the consignor decades ago. A 4 1/2" hairline from rim on front. A long in-the-firing separation descending from rim on interior, visible on exterior as a 2 1/2" hairline from rim above handle. A large network of tight, in-the-firing surface lines extending from base to midsection, not visible on interior. A 1 3/4" in-the-firing base chip, which is glazed over. Shallow chipping to foot. H 14".


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