Australian Pottery at Bemboka will be open as usual over the 2018 Easter weekend – Friday 30 March to Monday 2 April. We have some lovely pieces on display this season in the main gallery and in the downstairs foyer. New acquisitions include this very large stoneware bowl by Col Levy as well as a number of new pieces by Peter Rushforth and Shigeo Shiga.
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!
Geoff Ford’s Encyclopedia of Australian Potter’s Marks documents potters and potteries active before 1975 but includes marks used after this period. I thought it might be useful to provide an index of entries in the encyclopedia for potters active in the 1960s-1970s and beyond. Having marks recorded for these potters provides a good start but collectors will need to go to a wide range of other directories to cover the field, and many marks are still unrecorded.
Le Grand, Henri
Schulze, Robert A.
Smith, Ian (SA)