Wednesday, February 27, 2013

put a bird on it: vintage style

 Several years ago (2009?) an acquaintance came to my home for the first time and was, to be frank, aghast at the number of birds in my house.  Birds in art, birds in upholstery, a nest here and there, birds on lamps.  Nearly all of them are antique to vintage- dating to Victorian transferware plates to 1940s-60s chinoiserie designs.  Not too many contemporary pieces, but yes, I like birds.  At the time, I had a single bisque stamp of a swallow or dove in flight that I'd use on cups and bowls occasionally.

In 2011, I saw the hilarious Portlandia skit for the first time and promptly stopped using bird imagery in my work.  Of course, I kept all of my vintage bird china, artwork, and home furnishings, but I've been wary of using the imagery in my pots (excepting the chicken cups, of course).  This summer, when I found my giant vintage bird transferware platter, I changed my mind about birds on my work, and when I borrowed Marion's pitcher to copy, I abandoned that no-birds resolve completely.  

This platter is the first in a series with the birds, vintage style.  I'm very happy with it and am sending this piece to a new antiques and art gallery that opens on Friday.  I'm not abandoning my bees by any means, but right now I'm very much in love with these sweet blue birds.

I have 2  completed pitchers to show you and 2 unfired pitchers ready to photograph.  I'll be back here tomorrow.

Have a good week, friends.


Jess said...

I loved Put a Bird On It, and I, too, was wary of making bird-themed things for a while.
Birds are so wonderful, though, I am glad you jumped back in :)

Sarah Jackson said...

I really really love this. I think it's sad that such a funny skit really caused a lot of people to hesitate to do what they love. I'm glad you're back to birds. xoxo

Melissa Rohrer said...

O.K. I just watched that video and laughed hysterically. I have noticed that when I put a bird knob on top of a honey pot or salt pig it sells pretty quick. This reminds me of when I was new at pottery and rented space in a studio. One of the artists there read an article that said the most popular decorating item at the time was ducks and the most popular color was blue. We all decided we should be making blue ducks.
Those plates are gorgeous. Go with the birds.

the Lady D said...

My mother is an avid (albeit amateur) birdwatcher. We have a special connection to hummingbirds. Her latest passion is owl watching in rural Arkansas at my great-grandmother's house. Birds remind me of my lovely mother, and this latest work is just wonderful. Wonders never cease with you!

Cadry's Kitchen said...

I love your work with the sweet birds on it! I also gravitated to work with birds on it and then hesitated after the Portlandia sketch. But now I'm back to my bird-loving self. Interestingly, I heard that the same sort of thing happened after "Sideways" came out. People stopped buying Merlot. It was suddenly not cool and undistinguished, because of the scene in which Paul Giamatti is irate about the idea of being served it.