Mystery potter #15: Penny’s Peace Pottery

PPP. Celadon mug PPP. Celadon mug. Base

This white stoneware mug with pale celadon glaze and waratah decoration is marked with the impressed stamp PPP next to a map of Australia. In style it alludes to a long tradition of functional stoneware with Australian floral motifs but the wedged shape, the extreme paleness of the glaze and the pink stamens in low relief lend it a post-modern feel. There is a deftness to this piece that makes me surprised that I can’t identify the mark. It was one of four bought on eBay in 2005 from a Sydney seller and that is all I know about the provenance.

The initials PPP will resonate with Australian collectors because they stand for Premier Pottery Preston and were used in the form of a black underglaze stamp from 1929-1933 on Remued pieces. The two contemporary potteries that I can find with these initials – Poole’s Pony Pottery and Pumpkin Patch Pottery – seem unlikely candidates.

Peter Pilven, who lectures in ceramics at the University of Ballarat, signs his works Pilven or Peter Pilven. Pat Pearson, a potter active on the north coast of NSW in the 1980s, signed her work with a P in a triangle or her full name. Peter Petruccelli, who worked as a potter from 1968 to 1997, signed his ceramic pieces Petruccelli or stamped them Petruccelli Ceramics UBeaconsfield (for Upper Beaconsfield, Victoria). I don’t have marks recorded for Peter Pine, an Armidale NSW potter with an entry in the 1981 directory, or for Pat Pennington, a Leura NSW potter with an entry in the 1990 directory.

This puts paid to potters with the initials PP. I give up when it comes to places. At least I know that it is an Australian mark!

This mug was made in around 1988 by Heather Barrett. The PPP stands for Penny’s Peace Pottery. See Heather’s comments below.


  1. The name of the potter who made this coffee mug is Penny Barrett. Penny Barrett was my first ceramics teacher at evening college. She was a wonderful teacher and taught me so much and also encourage me to enroll in a ceramics course at Tafe. I think the PPP stood for Penny and peters Pottery or it could of been penny maiden name not quite sure. Penny won numerous awards for her slip decoration. Penny now lives down near Nowra and I think is a member of the nowra potters group. I hope this is helpful.
    Rhonda Morris

  2. Thank you Rhonda for your comments. Yes, this is a mug I made around 1988, the PPP stands for Penny’s Peace Pottery. Peace as pottery gave me so much peace. My real name being Heather Barrett but my nick name is Penny. The floral emblem is a spider grevillea impression. Australian flora was the basis for most of my slip decorated domestic pieces.

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