Thomas Whieldon, in the style of
English, 18th century
Platter, c. 1765–1775
1.9 x 25.5 x 21 cm
Collection of the Winnipeg Art Gallery; Acquired with funds from the Mrs. George H. Sellers donation
The tortoiseshell decoration featured on this relief-molded platter was achieved by allowing semi-translucent coloured glazes (copper and manganese compounds) to stain the cream earthenware ground. Immediately after application, a clear glaze was applied to preserve the mottled effect. This type of surface decoration is typical of so-called Whieldon ware, named after Thomas Whieldon. The foremost potter of his day, Whieldon was in operation between 1740 and 1780. Among his apprentices were Josiah Wedgwood, Josiah Spode, and William Greatbatch, all of whom went on to operate their own potteries. Josiah Wedgwood worked in partnership with Whieldon between 1754 and 1759, and it is likely that Wedgwood was actually responsible for many of the innovations that earned Whieldon his leading reputation in the field.