Wednesday, 3 August 2011

J is for Jones

To continue my alphabet of British Arts and Crafts metalware - J is for Albert Edward Jones (1878-1954), silversmith and metalworker.

He studied at the Birmingham Central School of Arts under Edward Taylor before working as a Guildsman at the Birmingham Guild of Handicraft working in the Arts and Crafts tradition. He established his own firm in 1902 employing many talented craftsman and soon acquired a reputation for fine and original design.

Unlike many silversmith Jones was not afraid of mixing materials. Whilst much is just silver handmade in the arts and crafts style with hammered finishes and twisted wire decoration, he also also made silver mounts for William Howsen Taylor's Ruskin Art Pottery, mounted coconut shells and used wood in his products.

Often over looked are his base metal items as they are usually unmarked, bearing pattern/shape numbers only. He produced some wonderful caskets and boxes, some silver plated and some with Ruskin Pottery or enamel plaques. Another group of ware that are often mis-attributed are the patinated copper with silver items like the box below. Do not be tempted to clean these.

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