Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Poole Pottery/ Delphis Range 1960/70's

Left: Poole Delphis platters by Jean Millership, 1966-1969, Photograph from Robs Poole Pottery
Right: Packaging design for Poole Pottery
Spear shaped sweet dishes by Various Artists
Pin dishes, Left to right: Carole Holden, 1968-69, Unsigned, 1962-64, Angela Wyburgh, 1968,
Photograph from Robs Poole Pottery
Pin dishes, Left to right: Carol Cutler 1969-76, Carol Cutler 1969-76, Geraldine O'Meara, 1966
Photograph from Robs Poole Pottery
Platters, Left to right: Shirley Campbell, 1966-69, Carolyn Bartlett, 1966, Jean Millership, 1966-69
Photograph from Robs Poole Pottery
Left: Right: Vase by Lynn Gregory, Platter by Carol Cutler, 1966-76
Photograph from Robs Poole Pottery
Vases, Left to Right: Cynthia Bennet, Valerie Pullen, Ros Summerfelt
Photograph from Robs Poole Pottery
Vases, Left to Right: Judy Evens, Carol Cutler, Christie Tate
Photograph from Robs Poole Pottery
Left: vase by Angela Wyburgh, Right: Various stacked Delphis silhouettes
Left to Right: Carol Cutler, Angela Wynburgh, The Poole stamp on bottom of pieces during the Delphis era
Photograph from Robs Poole Pottery
Pots, Left to right: Both by Jean Millership
Photograph from Robs Poole Pottery
Carved Delphis bowls by various artists including Pamela Bevans, Patricia Wells, Angela Wyburgh and Patricia Churchouse, 1966-70
Photograph from Robs Poole Pottery 

When does one start becoming a collector, Are you born with this gene already in your genetic makeup, Is it learnt by our parents or is it a result of not getting everything you wanted as a kid so the need to collect becomes stronger as you get older. We all know someone’s mother who collects eggcups or teaspoons or everything that has to do with pigs for instance, Why do they do it?

For me, my first collection started with ceramics and I have always said it’s one of the most dangerous things you can collect with the constant fear of it always breaking in the back of your mind, Maybe that’s why in a strange way people that collect breakables want to live with that constant risk? My first collection started with discovering a piece of ceramic in my early teens that had the mark Poole on the bottom. I was intrigued by it’s amazing glaze, it’s fluidity in design, it’s smoothness, and it’s vibrancy. I came to learn later that it was part of what they call The Delphis range.

For people who know me well, they know that I have been collecting Poole for years. I collect all era’s of Poole but as there is such a large catalog, for this post I will stick to The Delphis range. Poole as a company is located in Dorset, In England. Now owned by Denby, The Company was originally founded in 1873 on Poole quayside, where it continued to produce pottery by hand before moving its factory operations away from the quay in 1999.

"Delphis" Studio wares are easily recognized: it is labeled psychedelic, with vibrant colors and designs inspired by artists such as Mondrian, Warhol, Matisse and Pollock. Launched in 1963, was initially conceived by Guy Sydenham and Robert Jefferson and later developed by Jefferson and Tony Morris, One of the most famous of the many artisans who worked with Poole over the years.

The Delphis range used a black wax resist technique to delineate abstract patterns.  Every piece is pretty much unique, with designs created by the decorators themselves, and with serendipity playing a big part too.  Marketed as "irreproducible", this was true freedom of expression that befits the 1960’s.

To encourage this experimentation and creativity initially each decorator would be given a few hours a week to produce their own work, be it models, tile panels, any artistic output they wanted.  However, Delphis became such a commercial success that demand began to encroach on these creative freedoms with over time been introduced and later with the painters terms of work changed in 1972 from an hourly rate to piece work.

On the bottom of each piece it is clearly signed by the Artist and you can collect based on knowing whose designs you respond too the most, For me I always like Carol Cutler’s work, Her signature was CC.

Hope you enjoy looking at these amazing pieces, A great source is a website called www.robspoolepottery.co.uk
Check it out, Rob has an amazing collection of Poole and his site is truly inspirational.


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  2. Helpful article. Thank you. I've just acquired a Poole - Delphis vase - barbell shaped with an S signature. Would you have any idea which artist that might be? Please and thanks. :)