What better to do on a muggy summer day than to go on a hike in the countryside?
But if you struggle to get out, I know a way to see the most beautiful spots all over the United Kingdom without having to go very far... This very fine dessert service has stunning landscape paintings on each item, made by the famous painter George B. Johnson. The service was made by Royal Worcester in the year 1912.
This is a rare piece of artistry; it has a beautifully muted dark blue "powdered" ground, elegant lobed shapes and the centre of each piece is decorated with a unique landscape in equally muted colours. This style of landscape painting was called "Chamberlain-style", because it was first made popular by the Chamberlain Worcester factory in the very early 19th Century. As the Chamberlain factory got absorbed into the Royal Worcester factory, the skills remained so this style of landscape painting was continued well into the 20th Century.
The landscapes are all named, as can be seen on the underside of each item, which carries the name in graceful long hand. You can see mountains and craigs and castles from all over England, Scotland and Wales. The painter of these landscapes was George B. Johnson, who specialised in birds and "Chamberlain" landscapes. Apparently Mr. Johnson was a very tall bearded man of great stature within the factory; he was born in 1859 and worked at the Royal Worcester factory between 1875 and his death in 1931.
There is something else that is interesting about this service: each piece is marked with either a puce or a blue Royal Worcester mark, the year code for 1912, as well as a retailers mark "Maple & Co, London", which was a famous furniture retailer and cabinet maker in London. Maple & Co was a favourite among the Victorians and Edwardians, and they placed orders directly with the porcelain factories. Maple & Co were known for using old designs and bringing them up to date with the latest Victorian or Edwardian taste; you can see that in this beautiful service, which links back to the very early 19th Century Chamberlain Worcester designs.
Where to find things
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Happy weekend, and get out to go on a hike! ⛰🌳🐾
This week's new treasures: