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Four Seasonal Crinoline Figurines by Michael Powolny, Viennese Ceramics, c. 1910

$16,690.02per set

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Four pedestal-less crinoline figures with seasonal attributes: Spring: in a floor-length dress with a long scarf and poke bonnet, her head turned to the right to the pigeon sitting on her right arm, in her left hand hanging down a small wreath of flowers. Model number: denotes 225 - error, correct: 223 Summer: in a dress with a large neckline, with a scarf around the waist, the head with the hair loosely tied backwards turned to the left, a broad-brimmed hat decorated with flowers hanging down from the left arm and holding a bouquet with ears of corn in front of her. Model number: 224 Autumn: in a floor-length, checked dress with a light coat and a blue bow around her neck, her head with the pinned up, blond hair tilted to the left, holding green foliage with autumn fruits in her hands. Model number: 225 Winter: with a long, ermine-trimmed coat and scarf, on her blond hair a hat with plumes, her head tilted slightly to the left and both hands buried in front of her in the large muff on which the presents are piled up. Model number: 226 By Michael Powolny (1871 - 1954) Nowadays, art experts attest Michael Powolny’s work as the work of one of the most important ceramic artists and designers of Austrian Art Nouveau. Powolny's companions and successors were significantly influenced by him, since he had left behind a work that was extremely important for Viennese ceramic art. Powolny's putti - many of them made on behalf of Wiener Keramik (WK) - are sought after by knowledgeable Art Nouveau collectors, both because of their modeling quality and because of the endearing and distinctive appearance. Manufactured by 'Wiener Keramik' (Viennese Ceramics) ceramics, bright earthenware, glossy finish, multicolored hand-painting designed ca. 1910, made circa 1910-1912 Marks: WK+grapes - Wiener Keramik /= Viennese Ceramics MP - signet for Michael Powolny Dimensions: height: ca 30.0 cm / 11.81 in width: ca 20.0 cm / 7.87 in depth: ca 18.0 cm / 7.08 in Bibliography: - Thomas Arlt / Arthur Weilinger, WIENER KERAMIK / VIENNA CERAMICS Bertold Löffler, Michael Powolny, Werkverzeichnis / Catalog of works, 2018, Wien / Vienna; Pages 298-300, Numbers 223-226 - Waltraud Neuwirth, Markenlexikon für Kunstgewerbe (3), Wiener Keramik, Modelle 1906-13 / (= Encyclopedia of Marks of Applied Arts / Viennese Ceramics - models 1906-13); Pages 161-164, Numbers 223-226 - Elisabeth Frottier, Michael Powolny, Keramik und Glas aus Wien 1900 bis 1950 (= Ceramic and glass from Vienna 1900 to 1950); Catalog of works from Page 193, WV 98-101, Page 273 Company brands and artist's signatures. Condition: very good - usual signs of age.

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    Ships From: Vienna, Austria
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About the Sculptor

Michael Powolny

As both a designer and a teacher, the Austrian ceramicist and glassware designer Michael Powolny was an important figure in the development of modernist aesthetics in Vienna at the turn of the 20th century. His romantic sculptural pottery figures embrace the lush, dynamic stylings of Gustav Klimt and other progressive artists, while his functional pieces — such as glass bowls and vases — employ the simple linear and geometric ornamentation that marked the work of Josef Hoffmann and other members of the Wiener Werkstätte community of designers and craftsmen.

Powolny received classical training in ceramics from his father, a potter, and at the Vienna School of Applied Arts, but later joined in the modernizing movement in the Austrian arts at the close of the 19th century. In 1897, Klimt, Hoffman, Koloman Moser and other artists and architects founded the Vienna Secession, a group that fought for freedom of expression against the city’s tradition-bound arts establishment. Powolny’s work reflects the changing times. He used classical figures in his ceramics — female nudes, cherubs — yet would dress them in modern ornament such as garlands of abstract, geometric flowers. Pieces from Powolny’s ceramics company were sold through the Wiener Werkstätte (Viennese Workshops) founded by Hoffmann and Moser, and Hoffman later hired Powolny to create ceramic ornamentation for his architectural masterpiece, the Palais Stoclet in Brussels.

Powolny would go on to design glassware that combines elegant, tapering forms with precise linear decoration. His most influential work may have come as a professor at the School of Applied Arts, where he taught both Lucie Rie, the great Austrian-British modernist ceramicist, and the American potter Viktor Schreckengost, creator of the “Jazz Bowl,” an icon of the Streamline Moderne design. As you will see from the items on offer, Michael Powolny’s works have a double appeal: in their sprightly, endearing forms and as artifacts that document a period of signal change in the history of modern arts and crafts.

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