This Clarice Cliff tea set for eight is so rare and so “deco”. More streamlined and elegant than the playful “Bizarre Ware” that she is known for , this set in the “Bonjour” shape and “Target” pattern for the Newport Pottery Company in 1931. Concentric circles of blue and gold form the design that is repeated on the Tea Pot, Coffee Pot, Milk Jug and sugar bowl along with eight “trios” comprised of full size tea cup, saucer and dessert plate. What a fabulous tea party you can have with this set in outstanding condition (just a slight bit of staining on just one of the plates, otherwise its excellent.
Clarice Cliff is one of the most celebrated designer of Art Deco ceramics ! There are four books dedicated to the history of her work which also appears in several books on Art Deco Tableware and Accessories. Born in England in 1899 she began working in pottery at the age of 13, first painting the simple bands of gold on china plates. In 1916 she moved to the company of A.J.Wilkenson of Newport, Burslem to work with gilding, patterning and hand painting. Her work was brought to the attention of one of the partners, Colley Shorter, who gave her the opportunity to do some fanciful painting on product that had minor flaws…so the bold designs and colors concealed those imperfections on the plain white china. Her abstract, geometric and brightly hued pieces enjoyed such popularity..that although they were “bizarre”.hey were proudly named Bizarre Ware and signed with her name.
Clariece Cliff created hundreds and hundreds of objects, shapes and color ways and enjoyed international success. She was named Artistic Director and had a team of girls that hand painted her designs…at the high point nearly 70 painters worked to decorate her creations. Massive publicity efforts , including celebrity endorsements, color brochures , magazines, news articles and in-store painting demonstrations by Clarice as well as her “Bizarre Girls” made the work famous around the world. The steady stream of new designs, shapes and products made her work “collectible” even as it was produced.
Today, major museums have examples of her work and high prices can be achieved at auction. Some of the most popular and widely produced pieces such as those with the “crocus” pattern are common enough to occasionally find, but there are examples of Clarice Cliff’s work that have sold for $20,000 to $50,000 This spectcular set was found in Argentina, where it had been imported by Harrods Department Store of London for their Buenos Aires location on Florida Street.
Tea pot 7.5″ Tall X 3.25″ Deep 9″ Wide (spout to handle)
Coffee 7.5″ Tall , 3″ Deep 3.75″ Wide
Sugar 3.5″ Tall, 3.25″ Wide
Milk Pitcher 6.5″ Tall 3″ Deep
Cups 2.5″ Tall 3.5″ Wide
Dessert Plate 7″