Italian Maiolica Pottery Bust, ca. 1900
I bought her at a local antique store right here in the Kansas City area, I would say five to seven years ago. When I saw her, I thought she was beautiful, and from an emotional perspective, I was immediately drawn to her, but she was a little more expensive than I generally pay, so I actually thought about her for a while. I went back for her and made a little smaller offer and they would not go down, so I think it was about $150. So that was a major purchase for me. After I purchased her, I kind of looked online, and I found things that looked similar, so maybe it was Italian majolica, or however you pronounce that.
Okay, first of all, she is Italian, and in Italy, we would call this type of pottery maiolica, which is really similar to faience, so faience is not an incorrect term. She is entirely hand painted. If we look at her on the back, the decoration of her beautiful garment extends all over the back side. You know, it's a full figure. You can look at it from all sides. And one interesting thing I really like about her is her hairstyle. She actually has a long ponytail. It's been arranged where it starts at the back of the bottom of the head, it goes around the side, over the top, and around the other side. That's a really unusual hairstyle. Now, we do notice on the back, we see that there is a chip right in the center of the back. Now, we want her to be perfect, but if she's going to be imperfect, right at the center of the back is the best place it could be, where it's not very noticeable. I think in this case, it really doesn't affect the value. Very little, if any. We also notice that there is a big hand-painted mark on the underside. And I wonder who that is. And I have to tell you, I don't know. Now, with a lot of research, we might be able to figure out the maker, but we don't know. Now, I believe her to be around 100 years old, late 19th or early 20th century, based upon the way she's made. Now, I can tell you she's probably styled after a Renaissance period portrait bust, which is probably in a museum in Italy. Now, the value is based not so much on the age or who she is. It's based on the decorative appeal. So I believe that a retail value would be between $1,500 and $2,000 because she's so impressive and great looking.
Well, she is my... she's my closet sister, so... I never had a sister, and she's my princess.
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