Very Rare COWDEN & WILCOX / HARRISBURG, PA Stoneware Jug w/ Cobalt Grape and Foliate Spray Decoration

Summer 2020 Stoneware Auction

Lot #: 326

Price Realized: $3,900.00

($3,250 hammer, plus 20% buyer's premium)

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Auction Highlight:  Summer 2020 Auction | Central PA Stoneware

Summer 2020 Auction Catalog

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Very Rare Four-Gallon Stoneware Jug with Cobalt Grape and Foliate Spray Decoration, Stamped "COWDEN & WILCOX / HARRISBURG, PA," circa 1865, semi-ovoid jug with tooled shoulder and tapered spout, decorated with a brushed design of a cluster of eight grapes, surrounded by leaves, grass-like devices, and diagonal rays. Scarce cobalt X decoration flanking the maker's mark. Cobalt highlights to maker's mark, capacity mark, and handle terminals. Although this jug is impressed with a four-gallon capacity mark, it holds just under five gallons. This work features a highly unusual combination of Cowden and Wilcox's classic grapes motif and the pottery's distinctive foliate designs, including rays of cobalt revealing the Lyons, NY influence of Shem Thomas, who was active in Harrisburg for many years. As Cowden & Wilcox typically depicted grapes as a cluster hanging from a vine, this jug's use of the fruit as a central image surrounded by profuse brushwork is exceptionally rare, as well as visually striking. Provenance: A fresh-to-the-market example, purchased by the consignor forty years ago. Excellent, essentially as-made condition with a semi-circular, in-the-firing surface fissure to underside. H 17 1/2".



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