Mystery potter #31: ‘CL’ or ‘CC’

'CL'. Vase with flattened sides

'CL'. Vase with flattened sides. Base

This finely ribbed 16 cm high stoneware vase has been wheel-thrown and then altered, with flattened sides and rolled-over neck. The body has been glazed black on the inside and exposed lip and a yellow-brown with oxide inclusions on the outside, then decorated with a paler yellow slip on one side. The mark on the base is an incised ‘CL’ or perhaps ‘CC’ with a flourished dot.

Col Levy uses an incised ‘CL’ as a mark on some pieces, but his C is a cypher crossing the top of the L. This, and the impressed version of his mark, are both illustrated in Geoff Ford’s Encyclopaedia of Australian Potters’ Marks.

We thought for some time that the mark on this vase was another version of Col Levy’s incised mark, but Levy himself says not.  This raises the interesting question of who the maker really is. I’ve gone through the other potters in my database with the initials ‘CL’  and ‘CC’ without finding any obvious candidates.

Postscript: A fellow collector has seen a piece with this mark that also has a printed paper label saying that it was made by a member of the Hastings Craft Co-operative located at 790 Frankston/Flinders Road, Hastings, Victoria. Apart from a brief mention in the Victorian Government Gazette for 1984, I haven’t been able to find anything more about the Co-operative, but I am hoping for a breakthrough soon!


  1. Not much help, but I just found a pot with this mark in the antiques centre in Blackheath. It was quite different – a red vase with drips around it. More conventional than yours, but the mark’s the same. Perhaps it’s from the Blue Mountains region?

  2. I didn’t buy it because I don’t really like it, but next time I go, I’ll see if it’s still there and take a surreptitious photo (and hopefully not get expelled!)

  3. Hi Judith. I have also found a platter (and central dip bowl) with exactly the same mark and was just puzzling over whether it could be by col levy but obviously not.. Would you like me to upload a photo?

  4. I have put 2 pics in the group pool. Incidentally saw the same mark on ebay yesterday for a set of mugs; item number 230461957406..

  5. Hastings Arts and Crafts Co-operative (in 1986) is now Koonawarra Galleries Phone: (03) 5979 3094 Address: 790 Frankston-Flinders Rd Hastings VIC 3915. Maybe they will know something about the previous occupants of their premises.

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