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Posts Tagged ‘ek modern’

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This time of the year always tests my creativity. It is not easy to find a perfect gift; perfect for the occasion, perfect for the budget, perfect for the personality and perfect for the relationship I have with the recipient… So when I did find something “perfect,” I almost feel for patting on my shoulder myself. And I think I deserve it this time. 

A good friend of mine had a baby girl a few months ago. So I decided to give the baby her first Christmas present. Trying to look for a baby cloth, I made a tour in a fancy department store. It was a brave new world! There are so many cute things that I would love to buy all and also I cannot buy any. Panicking in the pile of baby cloths which cost almost same with the adults’ cloths (why!), an idea popped up: “I’m an antique dealer! Do something antique dealeresque!” So I looked through my inventory and found a small Iittala cup. It is one of the Niva series designed by the famous Finnish genius Tapio Wirkkala for Iittala. The Niva series boasts its texture reminiscent of arctic iceberg. The cup measures around 5 cm high and 4 cm diameter. The baby may not be able to use it until she becomes 5, but I look forward to the day when she enjoys bourbon in this cup with aunty (then a nice old lady vintage dealer lol).

So go take a look around vintage stores, flea markets and etc. Something amazing may be waiting for you! 

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EK Modern joins dzoom, the online price guide for design!

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If there is anything other than cell phone, video games (and players) and LPGA players that Korea should be proud of, it should be pottery. Often under-appreciated in the shadow of Chinese, the tradition of Korean pottery boasts both its long history and quality. Koreans started making stoneware around BC 1st century and developed it into celadon in 10-14th century and white porcelain after 15th century, both of which were highly sought after by then the Asian ruler China.

However, this tradition and the quality of works is largely lost due to the political turbulence during the 19-20th century, first Japanese occupation and then the Korean War. Artists in the modern Korea had to face the burden of reviving the tradition and creating something new, something modern. This struggle, I believe, is still going on.

Luckily I have found one exceptional lady who is making her stand in this struggle. Hwang Jong Nae (1927- ), one of the first modern Korean ceramic artists, was born to an artistic family; her father, Hwang Jong Koo, also a well-known potter, devoted his career to reviving the tradition of Korean celadon. She studied painting at a college and pottery at a graduate school. In the 50’s Korea, it is rare for a young lady to go to college not alone graduate school. It already tells how much she was devoted to this path and also her environment supported her passion. After the war, she started teaching and grew the next generation.

Her early works show a great sense of color; probably reflects her educational background in painting. She soon turned her interest to Punchong, transitional style between celadon and porcelain mainly created in 14-15th century. Her works not only rediscover the old style and method but also recreates it in a modern term.

During the conversation she said that Punchong was the most Korean pottery among many styles due to its history and nature. Punchong was known to be created often by ordinary craftsmen, as opposed to highly skilled ones for the noble clients during the 10-13th century, and features the unrestrained manner in its form and decoration.  One of her Punchong works is housed in the British Museum as a fine example of modern Korean pottery.

Many of contemporary Korean potters make interesting or rather trendy shape, which at times reflect the stereotype notion of “Asian,” mainly evolving around the minimal and nature-inspired zen style. However, I still believe what makes art great is not the trendy surface but the thoughts and the craftsmanship that could materialize the thoughts. Is it too old school of me?

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Thank you all for your keen interest in these lovely Czech pieces. I was so hyped up about the chronicle of ownership that I forgot to post the important information, its mark (haha very professional, no?). It bears a crown and in the shield in the center says “Porcelain fine de bohemia” and “underglaze-cobalt”. It is not included in either PM&M or Ginni’s. But it is confirmed by the initial “DF” and the other service set of the same forms with DF mark.

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There are really really good people who share their knowledge for free (in this commercialized, money-can-buy-your-soul kind of world!). While researching for the “DF porcerlain service set” I found a website that explores the entire history of this maker. Deapite my effort to summarize the whole story, it may look cumbersome. But it is amazing to see what kind of history the objects in front of me hides behind them.

In short, it is believed that the “DF porcelain service set” was created in 1920-45 based on their form and mark.

So enjoy the epic story of porcelian manufacturers! Many thanks to Porcelain Marks & More http://www.porcelainmarksandmore.com/bohemia/dallwitz_1/00.php and Ginni’s Bohemian & Czech Porcelain Factory & Marks Information  http://www.collectorscircle.com/bohemian/porcelain/marks_table1.html .

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1804-1814  Stoneware factory by the Ritter von Schönau brothers & Haßlacher

The brother Johann and Wenzl Ritter von Schönau founded a stoneware factory in Dallwitz and hired a technical specialist Benedikt Haßlacher as partner and director.
An instant success of business!

1814-1832  Stoneware factory by  Johann Ritter von Schönau (father) & Wolfgang Julius Ritter von Schönau (son)

Wolfgang during his time decided to rather concentrate on porcelain production, receiving a porcelain factory concession from the Gubernium on December 9th 1830. Even though the factory was running pretty well and all experiments were successful, Wolfgang sold the factory to the former farm owner Wilhelm Wenzel Lorenz.

1832-1850  Stoneware factory by Wilhelm Lorenz

A complete modernization of the factory and in 1844.
Wilhelm Wenzl Lorenz in 1850 sold the factory to the accountant Franz Fischer

1850-1855 Stoneware factory by Franz Fischer

The company continued to produce nearly the same range of products including luxury goods, tea- and coffee sets, plates, bowls and dishes, vases and a small number of figures as well as doll house items.

1855-1860  Stoneware factory by Franz Fischer & Franz Urfuß

Franz Urfuß joined the company as partner in 1855. The factory was renamed accordingly. However soon afterwards the two started to argue about the product range (which by now also included Rococo Revival pieces) and funding until Fischer finally gave up and retired, selling the factory to Urfuß.

1860-1871  Stoneware factory by Urfuß

Without proper financial backing  Urfuß was in the end forced to turn over control of the factory to his main creditor, the ‘Thüringer Bank’ (the largest Thuringian savings banks at that time).

1871-1889  Stoneware factory by David and Friedrich Riedl von Riedelstein

The ‘Thüringer Bank’  sold the factory in 1871 to the brothers David and Friedrich Riedl von Riedelstein. The brothers David and Friedrich drastically changed the product range and by the year 1883 it consisted of various porcelain dinner, coffee and tea sets both in standard or luxury versions as well as stoneware wash basin sets and normal tableware with lead-free glaze as well as many decorational majolica items based on various genres.

1889-1891  Porcelain factory Springer & Co.

Friedrich Riedl von Riedelstein sold the factory to Springer & Co., owner of the porcelain factory in Elbogen, which installed Ludwig Pröscholdt as director who concentrated on porcelain production and gradually discontinued the work on stoneware and majolica.

1891-1918  Porcelain, Stoneware and Majolica factory Pröscholdt & co.

Pröscholdt in 1891 together with the shareholders Rudolf Gottl and D. Zebisch purchased the factory from Springer & Co. and despite the misleading company name the factory actually only produced porcelain, re-activating the well-known basic ‘DF’ mark originally used by David and Friedrich Riedl von Riedelstein.

1918-1920  ÖPIAG – Östereichische Porzellan-Industrie A.G.

During the last years the market for Bohemain porcelain had slowly changed and business was slowly declining at all factories of the region. Based on an idea from 1917 the company was the first approached by a representative of the Austrian government and so got directly involved in the founding of the first association for porcelain promotion in Bohemia, the Österreichische Porzellan Industrie A.G. or ‘ÖPIAG’ for short.

1920-1945  EPIAG – Erste (böhmische) Porzellan-Industrie-A.G., Betriebsstätte Dallwitz

Following the successful establishment and first complete business year of the association the members eventually decided to rename it to reflect the changed political situation and as there were rumors of upcoming competition in form of the ‘Porzellan-Union A.G.’ the board decided to make a point by renaming the business according to the fact that it had been the first of its kind (in Bohemia). Business boomed and in 1930 the factory employed around 400 workers, a number which remained stable until 1937.

1945-1958  Starorolský Porcelán, EPIAG Dalovice

The whole EPIAG group was nationalized in 1945 and together with other factories became the ‘Starorolský Porcelán’ group. Due to the long tradition of the former privately owned Dallwitz factory in combination with its role during the OEPIAG/EPIAG period the name ‘EPIAG’ itself remained part of the factory name even after the creation of the ‘Karlovarský Porcelán o.p.’ branch directorate in 1958.

1958-1992  Karlovarský Porcelán, EPIAG Dalovice

The years passed and the factory in Dallwitz often played an important role in the history of the ‘Karlovarský Porcelán’ group, successfully representing the group on the national and international markets.

1992-1997  EPIAG DAFA s.r.o

In 1992 finally, shortly after the porcelain factories in Jokes-Witwitz near Jakobsburg (Czech ‘Jakubov’) and Gießhübel (at first named ‘Kysíbl’, then ‘Stružná’) had been integrated into the state-owned ‘Karlovarský Porcelán’ group, the general reprivatization process set in and all factories from the group were taken over by the transfer company ‘EPIAG DAFA s.r.o.’ which in 1997 stopped production at the Dallwitz plant.

2002-present  EPIAG Lofida Porcelán CZ s.r.o.

After a few years the former factory and all name and trademark rights were purchased by the ‘Lofida Porcelán CZ s.r.o.’ and business was reactivated under the famous EPIAG abbreviation. The company shortly afterwards already employed over 80 people and offered a comprehensive range of utility and exclusive chinaware products. Business was an instant success and already in the year 2009 the company was able to purchase the factory in Chodau (Czech ‘Chodov’), a former subsidiary of ‘Haas&Czjzek’ from Schlaggenwald (Czech ‘Slavkov’).

– the end 😉 –

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In many cases (sadly, not always) there is a good reason why the classics are classic. I believe they still hold aesthetic value and sometimes quite decent monetary value. In other words, we can still decorate our homes with them despite the time that elapsed since their first creation.

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http://www.ekmodernkorea.com/cat102_en.html

PH series is with no doubt one of them. I just found a nice picture of it decorating a modern home from Ellie Decoration (Korea edition) No.10. I personally prefer PH4 3/4 because of the visual simplicity (see the another angel halo added to PH5!) and the practical reason. Since most homes don’t have such high ceiling as that of galleries the more simpler sister of PH5 would make more sense. But nonetheless, it’s nice to see a nice home furnished with nice lamps. Nice Nice Nice!

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