Lot 1027: Collection of Five Pieces of Newcomb College Art Pottery, by Joseph Meyer, ca. 1905-1915

New Orleans Auction Galleries

March 18, 2018
New Orleans, LA, US

More About this Item

Description: Collection of Five Pieces of Newcomb College Art Pottery
by Joseph Meyer, ca. 1905-1915

including three graduated "Ali Baba" olive jars in green/blue, ochre and iridescent aubergine, h. 3-3/8" to 4-1/2", dia. 3" to 3-3/4", and two small bowls with two-tone gunmetal glazes, h. 1-3/4" to 2-1/2", dia. 3-1/2" to 3-3/4".

Notes: It is impossible to discuss the importance of Newcomb College art pottery without mentioning its preeminent potter, Joseph Meyer, and decorator Sadie Irvine, yet little is stated about Meyer as a ceramicist proper, or about Irvine's contribution to the Newcomb Guild.

Meyer, often regarded as the father of all Gulf Coast pottery, came from a long lineage of master French potters, who immigrated to America from Alsace and settled in Biloxi ca. 1857. After the Meyer's pottery store in Back Bay was destroyed in the August hurricane of 1860, the Meyers eventually moved to New Orleans and set up shop near City Park and founded the New Orleans Art Pottery Company. Before joining Newcomb in 1896, Meyer trained George Ohr, the eccentric Biloxi potter in New Orleans and later; while at Newcomb, at the behest of the Woodwards, he advised the young Anderson brothers on the development of Shearwater Pottery. In contrast to Newcomb's iconic slip painted pastels with botanical themes (exemplified in many of the other Newcomb lots), Meyer preferred experimental copper and red reduction glazes and fire glazes in iridescent and metallic hues, some of which are well demonstrated on these two bowls and the aubergine "Ali Baba" olive jar, named after the Persian tales, because of its shape. The range of glazes, clays, even shapes, represented in this lot is a fine example of the depth and range Meyer achieved. Meyer's experimental works were widely exhibited throughout the early 20th century in international fairs and received numerous accolades and awards, including a silver medal at the Pan-American Exposition in Buffalo, New York, and at the 1904 Louisiana Purchase Centennial Exposition in St. Louis.

Irvine, under the direction of Robert Durant Field and potter Kenneth Smith, was formative to the development of the Newcomb Guild, which sought to produce commercially oriented pieces of functional design and form inspired by the Bauhaus movement. As the primary decorator and instructor, Irvine was largely responsible for the Guild's nine beautiful high-gloss earth tone glazes, executed with subtle tonal variations that emanate outward from the rims or bases of the bowls and vases characteristic of these two Lichen Ware and Gulf Stream Ware examples in the preceding lot.
Condition Report: **There are two chips and some light abrading to the foot rim of the blue/green olive jar, and a chip to the foot rim of the ochre olive jar - none of which are visible unless turned upside down. The aubergine jar exhibits some very faint crazing to glaze. All five are in overall very good condition with no cracks, repairs or notable losses.

Request more information


Accepted forms of payment: American Express, Discover, MasterCard, Money Order / Cashiers Check, Personal Check, Visa, Wire Transfer
Shipping: New Orleans Auction Galleries does not provide shipping. A list of local shippers whom our clients have used and found to be reliable is available on request.
Buyer's Premium
From: To: Increment:
$0 $49 $5
$50 $99 $10
$100 $499 $25
$500 $999 $50
$1,000 $1,999 $100
$2,000 $4,999 $200
$5,000 $9,999 $250
$10,000 $14,999 $500
$15,000 $19,999 $1,000
$20,000 $49,999 $2,000
$50,000+ $5,000
Payment: We accept payments by check, cash and wire transfer [subject to a $30 fee for domestic wires and a $60 fee for international wires]; we also accept Mastercard, Visa, American Express and Discover for invoices up to $25,000. We do not accept Paypal. All payments must be in US dollars. Wire transfer information available on request.
Shipping: New Orleans Auction Galleries does not provide shipping. A list of local shippers whom our clients have used and found to be reliable is available on request.
Taxes: Purchases are subject to local taxes where applicable.
Condition : All sales are "As-is, where-is" and final. New Orleans Auction Galleries does not offer refunds. The absence of a condition report does not indicate that a lot is good condition or free of damage; bidders are strongly encouraged to a request a condition report for any lot in which they are interested.
View full terms and conditions