Saturday, 30 April 2011

Barry Pittar - Art Pottery Figures #10

A recent lucky find has reminded me of this artist and the quality of his modelling.

Very few of my followers would have encountered Barry (1878-1948) before as his out put would to be limited in number and range of retail outlets. So here is another artist in continuing series on art pottery figure artists.

Here are some facts;

Thomas Frederick Barry Pittar was born in 1878 and is recorded as a painter, architect, etcher, poster artist and ceramicist. Known to have lived in  London in 1919 and Dunstable, Bedfordshire c1924.

He studied at the Royal College of Art and St John's Wood Art School. He was an Associate of the Royal Society of British Artists (RBA) from 1919 and a full member in 1920. He was also a Fellow of the Zoological Society. The FZS initials incised on the figures. A picture of St Michael's Mount was used by the Great Western Railway for an advertising poster.


He exhibited widely including;
Abbey Gallery - 1
Fine Art Society - 65
Grosvenor Gallery - 3
Glasgow Institute of the Fine Arts - 1
Royal Society of British Artists - 143
Royal Institute of Oil Painters - 1
Royal Scottish Academy - 10


He is known to have worked at the Doulton Potteries in Lambeth from c1895 until c1905; after which he appears to have tried to live as a painter/artist. He had a studio in London before moving to the Hogarth Studio in Bushey, Hertfordshire; a well established artist colony. He established his studio/pottery in the back garden of his house, "Little Cheverells" in Markyate near St Albans in c1930 where he was assisted by his wife Edith. The animal models would appear to date from this period.

Interestingly he is listed in the 1936 Kelly's Trade directory as an Art Pottery Maker at Whipsnade. Perhaps, some of the figures are of the animals at the Zoo?

After Barry died in 1948, Edith moved to "Barina Cottage" next door and continued to pot, making item such as Toby jugs marked "Barina Ware" and/or "St Albans Ware"


I think the only reliable way to identify his pottery is when marked. The 3 pieces I have owned all had clear incised marks. The picture below is a typical example. The modelling is very good but the pottery is fragile. Subjects seen include, Seal, Alsation, Rabbit, Polar Bear, Flying Ducks and Toby jugs.


For more pictures of the Rabbit try - www.meridiangallery.co.uk whilst stocks last.
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