Excellent Ottman Bros., Fort Edward, NY Peacock Scene Jug

March 23, 2019 Stoneware Auction

Lot #: 1

Estimate: $3,000-$5,000  A Note About Estimates

March 23, 2019 Auction Catalog

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Outstanding Three-Gallon Stoneware Jug with Oversized Cobalt Peacock-on-Stump Decoration, Stamped "OTTMAN BROS. & CO. / FORT EDWARD, N.Y.", circa 1875, cylindrical jug with tooled spout, decorated with an oversized slip-trailed design of a peacock with eyed tail, turned and crested head, and heavily-detailed body, above a very large, tripartite stump, flanked by looping trails. Cobalt highlights to maker's mark. The decorator of this jug based his design on the work of other New York State and Bennington, Vermont decorators, most probably John Hilfinger (1826-1888), whose hand can be identified at a number of Northeastern stoneware manufactories. However, this decorator's mimicking of related motifs has resulted in a truly extraordinary work of ceramic art. This jug depicts one of the largest peacocks-on-stump (in comparison to vessel size) that we have seen on a piece of American stoneware, executed with a charming looseness and spontaneity uncharacteristic of the steady hand of Hilfinger and others. The final work created is a wonderful example of folk expression. The vast majority of Fort Edward stoneware designs, while hand-painted, are somewhat formulaic, repeatedly applied by the pottery's decorators as signature motifs over and over again. The design on this jug, however, is believed to be a unique effort. This jug, defined by its appealing subject matter, the size of its decoration, and its lavish application of cobalt, is regarded as one of the finest examples of signed Fort Edward, NY stoneware that we have ever offered. Provenance: A fresh-to-the-market example, which recently surfaced in a New England collection. Hairlines on underside, one continuing 4 3/4" up side of jug and another continuing 7/8" up base of jug, where it forms a small Y. Some minor in-the-firing pings to base area. Light wear to handle. H 15 7/8".


Excellent Ottman Bros., Fort Edward, NY Peacock Scene JugExcellent Ottman Bros., Fort Edward, NY Peacock Scene JugExcellent Ottman Bros., Fort Edward, NY Peacock Scene Jug

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