Rare Sewer Tile Stoneware Bust, probably by African-American Georgia Potter Odell Pickens

October 17, 2015 Stoneware Auction

Lot #: 225

Price Realized: $1,495.00

($1,300 hammer, plus 15% buyer's premium)

PLEASE NOTE:  This result is 6 years old, and the American ceramics market frequently changes. Additionally, small nuances of color, condition, shape, etc. can mean huge differences in price. Please Contact Us for a Current, Accurate assessment of your items.

October 17, 2015 Auction Catalog

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Very Rare Sewer Tile Folk Sculpture of a Soldier's Bust, probably Odell Pickens, Chattanooga Valley, Georgia origin, circa 1920, large-sized, hand-modeled bust of a soldier with mustache, buttoned coat, and bowtie, the salt-glazed surface with incised details to face, hair, and clothing. Of interesting note is the inclusion of a tragus on the interior of the ears, a popular trait of face vessels made one state north in Edgefield, South Carolina, during the second half of the 19th century. Family history states this sculpture was made by the African-American tile pottery worker, Odell Pickens, or an associated family member. Pickens is listed in the 1920 census as born in 1895 and working as a "fireman", most likely a kiln operator, at a tile works in Chattanooga Valley, Georgia. Provenance: Ex-Tony and Marie Shank. This lot includes two brief letters regarding its possible maker. Hat and one epaulet lost during the firing. Some small losses to coat. H 8 1/2" ; L 10 1/2".

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