Antique Georgian Prattware Figurine of an Ordinary Woman and it is that very Ordinariness that is so Wonderful


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THE STORY - Now they say opposites attract and I have to say this could certainly be true in this case as this darling girl was in the same auction lot as the magnificent Spring figurine I posted a couple of weeks ago. Although both of similar age 1790-1810 and both falling under the term 'Prattware' they could not be more different in subject, Spring is ethereal , mythical where this darling girl is beautifully ordinary. My instinct tells me that this figurine would most likely date to the beginning of the 1800s circa 1810, and she is glazed with three of the typical colours of Prattware pottery which were derived from metal oxides to withstand the necessary high heat of the glazing firing, yellow, blue and brown. Her form is very simple both she and the round base she stands on are hollow, the base has sponge decoration around its edge, and her hands and arms are covered by her yellow cape edged in blue, which would certainly have made the mould easier and cheaper to make but I think her face is beautifully moulded and I love the shape of her nose and her tiny lips with just a hint of a dimple either side. And then of course we have the painting of her face which undeniably one cannot call fine, but my goodness does it exude charm, her little eyebrows high upon her brow, her eyes defined just with dots with a line above, and then we have what possibly be described as somewhat slap dash painting where the blue glaze from the edge of her cape has touched her face on one side, almost giving the impression of tears falling down her face. And that little fringe painted in individual little strokes falling from her brown hair pulled back into a bun. This figurine was not made for the wealthy, sophisticated market, but neither was she produced as a trifle or a toy, and one can see examples which have such naivety and simplicity to the figurines it can be hard to make out their identity. Although I do believe she was made to appeal to the more accessible cheaper end of the market, I think she would have been thoughtful and prized purchase and one that value has truly lasted.

AGE - Circa 1810

CONDITION - She is in very good condition with no chips or cracks that I can see. There are some flaws in the yellow glaze of her cape on one side which can best be seen in the fourth photo. And of cause we have the blue glaze which has touched her face. And I also want to mention that in the close up photo of her face (5th photo) her nose appears somewhat rough in texture which undeniably it must be but I do not see it by eye.

DIMENSIONS (Approx) - Height - 6&3/4" / 17cm, Width 2&1/4" /6cm, Depth 2&1/2" / 6.5cm

So there she is my beautiful ordinary lady. And I wonder who did buy her and loved her and what she meant to them. Maybe they too wanted to be able to wear a white dress and be kept warm with a splendid yellow cape, and wear upon their feet splendid brown slippers. But whoever did buy her, she was was loved and she was valued and this has carried on for over two hundred years, her beauty is enduring. And how I love her face with her blue tears and how strangely I find myself in love with those shoes peeping out from under her dress. She is ordinary and she is wonderful.

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