Hugh Robertson Dedham Vases, ca. 1902
They came to me by virtue of the fact that my wife passed away, and it came to me through the will. One of the Robertson family members, or maybe two, were friends of my mother-in-law, and they gave these two vases to my mother-in-law, and now I own them.
They're both signed "Dedham" for Dedham Pottery. And what made Dedham famous was certainly not pieces like these. What made Dedham famous were the plates and the bowls that they made with crackled glazes and little bunnies. They made a lot of those. And those were made to make money so that Hugh Robertson, who was behind the helm, could work on making new glazes. That was all this was about. These are all about glazes. If you look at the shapes, the shapes are rather heavy. They're not very elegant. The pieces themselves are heavy. They're not very well thrown, and it's done quickly. It's all about how to make beautiful glazes. And Hugh Robertson came from a long line of Scottish potters, many generations, and he was always attracted to Asian ceramics and their glazes and wanted to come up with his own version of an oxblood glaze, sang de boeuf. In 1888, he finally came out with the fabulous red glaze that he was looking for. That sang de boeuf, or oxblood, ended up being called Robertson's Blood because he had really put everything he had in there. And he was also doing these gorgeous volcanic glazes, and he won a lot of prizes internationally for them. So he started making these glazes when he was at the Dedham Pottery in Massachusetts, and that would have been after 1896 and before 1908. And I will show the marks here, which are customary of these experimental glazes. You've got "Dedham," you have the "DP" mark here, and you've got "HCR," which is for Hugh C. Robertson. So both of these have that. As far as pricing goes, this one here has a chip which is not insignificant and is bigger inside than it is on the outside, but it is bigger and it's a more interesting form. I would probably put this, at auction, at $1,500 to $2,000.
And I would probably do $2,000 to $3,000 on this one.
Very interesting. My mother-in-law will be very pleased to hear that her gift is worth quite that much.
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