German Mettlach 1904 Villeroy Boch Jug Ewer Elder Berry Tree Art Nouveau 7 ½ in. Stunning antique pitcher, now 114 years old, made in 1904, at the height of the very exciting Art Nouveau, Judendstil period, think Alphonse Mucha, Gustav Klimt, etc. At the world famous Villeroy & Boch factory in Mettlach, Germany. Villeroy and Boch was first founded in 1748 by Francois Boch, the “Bombardier du Roi”, who, together with his three sons began a ceramic company. In 1809 Jean-Francois Boch bought the former Benedictine abbey in Mettlach on the River Saar, which is the Company headquarters today. This stunning art nouveau jug holds ¾ litre, has a tall elegant shape, an octagonal lower body, tapering up to a tall cylinder, with a wide sensual curved pouring lip, all neatly balanced by an elegantly pulled, shaped handle, wonderfully decorated with an incised, stylised elderberry tree design, their slim trunks rising up the body and bursting at the top with luscious dark, golden fruits all on a silky glazed background of ivory cream, with panels of golden mustard and flowing lines of rich Prussian blue. We can see a strong influence from the art from this time on this lovely piece; see the portrait below of Eugene Boch painted by Vincent van Gogh. Generation of the wealthy dynasty of ceramic manufacturers Villeroy and Boch. This portrait today hangs in the Musèe d’Orsay in Paris. Van Gogh always carried this painting, entitled Der Dichter (The Poet) with him on his travels. After his death, van Gogh’s sister-in-law gave the painting as a gift to Eugène who bequeathed it to the Louvre in 1942. Anna and Eugène Boch were themselves neo-impressionists and had frequent contact with prominent artists of their day, such as Toulouse-Lautrec, Ensor and van Gogh. Van Gogh’s letters are proof of the deep friendship he shared with Eugène Boch. This pitcher is fully marked on the base with the abbey mark, frequently referred to incorrectly as a “castle”, is a representation of an 11th century abbey which still stands today in the village of Mettlach. The mark consists of the abbey above a banner, or placard, which includes the word “METTLACH” and the joined letters V and B (for Villeroy and Boch). GES GESCH, which is an abbreviation meaning legally protected. The 04 to the right and below the Mettlach tower mark, means it was made in 1904. Roman numerals are used to indicate different sizes for that form number. In this case a Roman numeral II indicates a 3/4 litre size. The form number is 2947 and there is also a 7 and initials JL which are probably the makers and painters marks. The incised abbey mark was normally used on relief, etched and cameo wares, and on some later print-under-glaze or PUG items. Height 7 1/2 inches (19 cm). Excellent condition, no chips, cracks or restoration, a couple of tiny age scuffs. Please refer to the photographs as they form an important part of the description. The item “German Mettlach 1904 Villeroy Boch Jug Ewer Elder Berry Tree Art Nouveau 7 ½ in” is in sale since Friday, May 3, 2019. This item is in the category “Pottery, Porcelain & Glass\Date-Lined Ceramics\Art Nouveau/ 1890s-1919″. The seller is “christinejaynestiles” and is located in Bexhill-on-Sea, East Sussex. This item can be shipped worldwide.
- Original/Reproduction: Antique Original
- Product Type: Decanters/ Flasks
- Manufacturer/ Type: Villeroy & Boch
- Style: Art Nouveau