Alice Karle Appraisal
Fine & Decorative Art
Picasso Ceramics Vase
15 inches high
Picasso ceramics vase. A partially glazed, figurative earthenware amphora shaped vase with two high handles. This Pablo Picasso ceramics figural vase has an impressed stamp under the base, Edition Picasso Madoura. It is from the original edition of 400 copies, circa 1952. This Picasso vase is titled, The King. In 1953 it was followed by The Queen.
In 1946, Pablo Picasso attended a ceramics exhibition where he was attracted to the work of the Madoura Pottery. He was introduced to the owners, Suzanne and George Ramie. The Madoura Pottery was located in the small, scenic town of Vallauris in the south of France. Picasso moved there to be close to the Madoura Pottery, living in Vallauris from 1948 to 1955. Picasso remodeled Les Fournas, a former perfumery in Vallauris, and established his studio there.
The collaboration between the Madoura Pottery and Pablo Picasso lasted for twenty-five years. In most cases Pablo Picasso provided sketches, although occasionally he would paint pieces himself. For many years after being issued this Picasso vase would have been relatively inexpensive, but not so today.
In Vallauris, Picasso developed a fascination not only with pottery, but also the linocut medium. Printer Hidalgo Arnera introduced Picasso to the linocut, or linoleum cut, process. Linocut is a relief printing process, in which the soft linoleum is mounted on a block and carved away to create the image. Linocut lends itself to bold and fluid lines, which are often difficult to achieve in other printing processes.
Picasso’s work in the linocut medium in turn influenced the decoration of the Picasso ceramics. Picasso’s linocut prints portrayed events in Vallauris, the annual Ceramic Exhibition and the bullfights. He also produced other prints in the medium, pushing its’ boundaries to create extraordinary images demonstrating a mastery of form and color.
In addition to the Picasso ceramics, during his residence in Vallauris Picasso created paintings, sculptures, and linocuts, all while continuing to work on his lithographs with the firm of Mourlot, in Paris. In 1959 his masterpiece, the diptych “War & Peace”, was installed in the chapel of the Château de Vallauris.