Extremely Rare and Fine SOLOMON BELL / STRASBURG, VA Redware Pie Plate w/ Bold Copper Slip Decoration

Summer 2023 Stoneware Auction

Lot #: 430

Price Realized: $15,600.00

($13,000 hammer, plus 20% buyer's premium)

PLEASE NOTE:  The American ceramics market frequently changes, often dramatically. Additionally, small nuances of color, condition, shape, etc. can mean huge differences in price. If you're interested in having us sell a similar item for you, please contact us here.

Auction Highlight:  Summer 2023 Auction | Shenandoah Pottery | Southern Redware

Summer 2023 Auction Catalog

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Exceedingly Rare Octagonal Redware Dish with Copper-Slip Floral Decoration, Stamped "SOLOMON BELL / STRASBURG," Va origin, circa 1850-1880, molded, eight-lobed dish with coggled edge, the interior decorated with a bright, slip-trailed copper-slip design of four stemmed, open-centered tulips emanating from a cluster of leaves, applied under a clear lead glaze. Side of dish impressed with the maker's mark, "SOLOMON BELL / STRASBURG." Arguably the finest signed slipware dish known in Shenandoah Valley pottery production, this work features Bell's distinctive slip-trailed tulip in a sea-green copper slip based in the Hagerstown tradition. While slip-decorated dishes are found in abundance in the Pennsylvania-German redware tradition, extremely few examples from Strasburg have survived. This specific form of molded dish was produced with relative frequency by Bell's brother, John, in Waynesboro, Pennsylvania, but is extremely rare among Strasburg members of this family. The condition is extraordinary and the maker's mark is a highly unusual variant in which the final line of the stamp, reading "Va.," is clearly omitted. We have seen this mark variant on only one other piece, a large slip-decorated bowl. The stamp is possibly a very short-lived mark used between Bell's two-line "SOLOMON BELL / Strasburg, Va.," maker's mark and his well-known three-line "SOLOMON BELL / STRASBURG / Va." mark. Among the finest examples of signed Solomon Bell pottery to come to auction in years. Excellent condition with minor edge chips and minor wear to slip. Diam. 9 1/2".

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