I think Kevin hit the nail on the head. I love the daftness of this figure and I love the coloring. Yellows and reds are always so pretty. This is a particularly rare figure. I have four examples on file. Two are totally dismissible because the tombstones and bocages are modern replacements. The third is in the Potteries Museum, Hanley, and, although complete, the colors are very nasty (a brown base is not a pretty site.) The only other example I know of had sold at Sotheby’s NY in 1987, and the catalog notes it has a Mannheim provenance. This month, 23 years later, that very same figure came my way, still with a Mannheim label beneath.
- The figures on this group are arranged differently to those on the other three examples—but not one of the figures has been off the base.
- The clay used to make this figure had an impurity that fired blue, so there are little blue specks visible on the surface. Not unattractive. Just daft!
- Beneath, this figure is painted green. I have never before seen a figure group painted beneath. This looked totally correct to my eye, but to be sure I tested with paint stripper. The green doesn’t move, confirming my belief that it is as made.