Exceedingly Rare & Important Remmey, Philadelphia Stoneware Face Jug

Fall 2020 Stoneware Auction

Lot #: 143

Estimate: $8,000-$12,000.  A Note About Estimates

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Fall 2020 Auction Catalog

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Exceedingly Rare and Important Cobalt-Decorated Stoneware Face Harvest Jug, attributed to Henry Harrison Remmey or Richard Clinton Remmey, Philadelphia, PA, circa 1855-1865, wheel-thrown form with footed base, arched handle, and applied narrow and wide spouts. Decorated on both sides with a hand-modeled and applied man's face, including a raised oblong forehead, bulging eyes, nose, broad chin, scrolled ears, and open mouth with bared teeth. Incised details to sideburns, beard, eyebrows, and teeth. Impressed circular pupils to eyes. Heavy cobalt brushwork throughout applied faces, delineating the mustache, beard, sideburns, eyebrows, and eyes. As each side is hand-modeled, subtle differences create different expressions to the faces. One face stares pensively at the viewer while the other, having higher placed eyes, looks upward in a contemplative or supplicative gaze. The two-sided face jugs of the Remmey family rank among the most coveted forms in all of American utilitarian pottery, regarded in folk art circles as iconic works. Only a small number are known and very few examples have to come to auction in the past thirty years, this restored jug being among the most brilliantly-colored of any example known. Due to the fragile nature of the applied features, condition is frequently an issue, with some examples having losses that even occurred during the firing. Provenance: A recently-surfaced example. Professional restorations. Restored handle. Restoration to much of larger spout. A small restored chip to smaller spout and small restored area to top center of jug. One side with professional restoration to most of nose, restoration to a section of one eye, and restoration to a long, shallow flake to applied forehead. Other side with restoration to a large section of nose. A restored 1 3/4" chip to foot. Minor unrestored chips. Minor surface wear. H 7 1/4".



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