Lot No. 0373
Rare and early Moorcroft vase with Hazeldene design done under a rich, ruby lustre glaze, circa 1914. The twin handled vase stands 11 7/8 inches tall and features a typical rolling landscape with silhouetted trees. What makes this piece interesting is the lustre glaze and the method by which the vase is signed: the W. Moorcroft signature is incised rather than painted on. A letter from Walter Moorcroft dated 12 March, 1971 answers a previous owner’s questions about the vase.
“The large vase which you have bought is a very rare piece both on account of its size and colour. It is probable that there are not more than twelve such pieces in existence. Your reference to the incised signature and absence of normal marks combined with the faintness of the revised outline of the decoration makes me believe that it is “Flaminian”; you can confirm this by looking underneath the vase and if the bottom is coloured with a deep pink or reddish glaze it is “Flaminian”. This effect was obtained dipping the whole vase in the deep pink glaze which would obscure the marks MOORCROFT and MADE IN ENGLAND which had been impressed in the clay. It would also obscure any signature applied with a brush, hence the incised signature. After the application and firing of the pink glaze the whole piece was then treated with a ruby lustre and fired again. This not only deepened the tones of red but caused a gold sheen or reflection from normal day light. (This seems to fit with the irridiscence (sic) to which you refer. These pieces were made at the Moorcroft factory about 1914/1915.”
Dennis and Edwards “Moorcroft” pictures five similar vases on page 64 and notes “Ruby lustre was first produced in 1907.
Overall condition is excellent with minor rubs to the lustre glaze at the rim and a glazed over grinding chip at the base which is entirely in the making of the piece.