Vibrant pottery filled with fantasy

From 1850 until the 1920s, highly decorative majolica ceramics were nothing short of a craze. The makers were originally inspired by th...

From 1850 until the 1920s, highly decorative majolica ceramics were nothing short of a craze. The makers were originally inspired by the Italian Renaissance majolica and French Articles by Palissy, and the molded earthenware – made in England and the United States – was whimsical but practical, whimsical but drawn from nature. A 380-room exhibit over four floors, many designed to serve oysters, asparagus, celery, berries and tea, will be on display at the Bard Graduate Center on the Upper West Side from September 24 to January 2, 2022. It will then go to Walters Art Museum in Baltimore (February 27 to August 7, 2022). In addition to parts for serving food, there are purely ornamental items, such as a life-size peacock. The fashion for majolica died out with the evolution of tastes and the use of lead glazes in the manufacture.

“Majolica Mania: Trans-Atlantic Pottery in England and the United States 1850-1915”, timed tickets required, Bard Graduate Center, 18 West 86th Street, 212-501-3023,

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Vibrant pottery filled with fantasy
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