Peter Collier

Mystery potter #18: ‘DRM’ with fish

DRM, Stoneware teapot

DRM, Stoneware teapot. Mark

This well-made grey stoneware teapot with reduced iron glaze and cane handle has an impressed fish as a mark and someone has also written the letters ‘DRM’ underneath in indelible pen. I would guess from its style that it dates from the 1970s. Its eBay seller comes from Newcastle, NSW, which may give a clue to its provenance.

Quite a few potters have the initials ‘DR’ and ‘DM’ but I don’t have any recorded using ‘DRM’ as a mark or with R as a middle or hyphenated name. In any case, I am not sure of the status of the added initials.

For interest, here are some other potters who use a fish as their mark:

  • John Fisher, a Sydney potter who migrated to Australia from Czechoslovakia in 1950. He and his wife Edith made distinctive slip cast ware under the label Studio Fisher from 1951-1959. (For more on Studio Fisher see The people’s potteries : stories of the art potteries of Sydney – post WW2 / Dorothy Johnston. Cooranbong, N.S.W. : Dorothy Johnston, 2002, pp. 68-69, 197-199)
  • A mystery potter signing his work ‘Bryce Chesney’ or ‘Boyce Cheaney’ and also including his initials inside the outline of a fish.
  • Another mystery potter signing his work ‘George Helps’ with an outline of a fish.
  • Peter Collier, a potter from the Blue Mountains, NSW, signing his work ‘P. Collier’ with what looks like the outline of a fish but could just be a flourish.
  • Kathryn Soanes, a potter from Torquay, Vic, whose mark in the 1996 Australian Potters’ Directory is shown as ‘K. SOANES TORQUAY – AUST’ inside the outline of a fish.

Studio Fisher, Mark Bryce Chesney, Mark George Helps, Mark Peter Collier, Mark