Inscribed, with glazed initials, on reverse: DC [unidentified individual]
This large and impressive tile has long been considered one of the Grueby Faience Company’s greatest achievements. Its sophisticated design, skilled craftsmanship, and deep reverence for nature epitomizes the best of the American Arts and Crafts movement, which promoted an integration of the arts and simple ornamentation inspired by natural forms. This tile’s flat, stylized rendering of a dense woodland scene, composed of discrete patches of glaze, recalls the process of abstraction inherent to mosaics, stained glass, and color woodblock prints. Yet the pooling and crackling of the creamy glazes give the tile a richly textured surface all its own.
Grueby Faience Company, a Boston art pottery firm founded by William H. Grueby, gained international recognition for its velvety matte glazes in rich earth tones at the turn of the 20th century. Addison LeBoutillier, the firm’s chief designer at that time, designed some of the company’s most distinctive pictorial tiles beginning around 1902.
From the 2019 exhibition American Art, Colonial to Modern, curated by Barbara J. MacAdam, Jonathan L. Cohen Curator of American Art
American Art, Colonial to Modern, Israel Sack Gallery and Rush Family Gallery, Hood Museum of Art, Dartmouth College, Hanover, New Hampshire, January 26-July 21, 2019.
William P. Curry, New York, New York; lent to present collection, 2011; given to present collection, 2017.
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