A History of Eighteenth-Century German Porcelain
A first time complete catalogue of a recently donated private collection - one of the most important in the world - of 18th-Century German porcelain.
Th e Wa r da St ev e ns Sto u t Co l l ect io n A History of Eighteenth-Century German Porcelain Christina Nelson w i t h a n e s s ay by Letitia Roberts The Dixon Gallery and Gardens 4 Contents 00 Foreword Kev in Sh a r p 00 Acknowledgments Ch r ist in a N e lso n 00 The Collector Warda Stevens Stout Let it i a Ro be rts 00 A History of Eighteenth-Century German Porcelain Ch r ist in a N e lso n 00 00 00 00 00 00 00 00 00 00 00 00 00 00 00 00 00 00 00 00 Introduction Meissen Ansbach Berlin Frankenthal FĂźrstenberg Fulda HĂśchst Ludwigsburg Nymphenburg Thuringia Overview Closter Veilsdorf Gotha Limbach Volkstedt Vienna Selected List of German Porcelain from The Warda Stevens Stout Collection Bibliography Index The Collector Warda Stevens Stout l e t i ta r o b e r t s Grow i ng u p at the end of the nineteenth century on a farm in Salem, Indiana, Warda Stevens never dreamed that one day she would be recognized internationally as a collector of highly sophisticated European porcelain. Nevertheless, by the end of her productive life at age ninety-nine, Warda Stevens Stout had realized nearly all her dreams. She had formed a comprehensive collection that would tell the story of eighteenth-century European porcelain. Born on May 10, 1886, Warda was the second child of Warder W. Stevens and Mary Alice Caspar. Her brother, Ray Caspar Stevens, had preceded her in 1884. His death from diphtheria in 1898 marred a childhood that had been idyllic. Warda entered Indiana University in 1903 with the intention of satisfying her father’s ambition for her to become a doctor. However, medicine was not her calling.1 She focused instead upon Charles Banks Stout (1881–1965), the fifth of seven children born to Adeline McCarnell and John T. Stout, a prosperous banker in Paoli, Indiana (twenty miles west of Salem). In 1904, Charles had just graduated from Earlham College in Richmond, Indiana, and had entered the family flour mill business. The two met at a party; they were married on November 1, 1906. After the birth of their first child, Alice Adeline, in 1908, Charles Stout moved his small family to eastern Oregon and opened the first flour mill in the area. The project was successful and shortly thereafter, Stout sold the mill and moved his household to Astoria, Oregon, where he founded the equally successful Portland Flour Mills Company.2 In 1915, the entire family relocated to Memphis, where, while retaining his Oregon interests, Charles Stout in 1920 founded the Dixie-Portland Flour Company (a flour-blending operation). He subsequently opened plants in Mobile, 7 Alabama; New Orleans; Jacksonville, Florida; Savannah, Georgia; Charleston, South Carolina; Wilmington, North Carolina; and Norfolk, Virginia. During the Great Depression of the 1930s, he expanded his mills and acquired others in Missouri and Kansas. Although Stout sold the business to Federal Compress and Warehouse Company in 1959, he was known as “The Flour Baron of Memphis” until his death in 1965 at age eighty-three With the arrival of their second daughter, Charlotte, in 1919, the Stouts moved from their Memphis apartment into a modest house. Warda Stout began creating a garden—her lifelong passion. When the family moved to a substantial Spanish-style house at 517 Goodwyn Avenue, she acquired what would become her three acres of gardens.3 In 1977, she gave The Dixon Gallery and Gardens the many plants she lovingly cultivated over decades. Nobody remembers how she discovered chinapainting, but Warda brought to it the same fervor Fig. 1 Exterior view of Mrs. Stout’s home at 517 Goodwyn Avenue, Memphis. C at. 77 Meissen Teabowl and Saucer, ca. 1730 Teabowl: H 1¾ × DIAM. 27/8 inches (4.4 × 7.3 cm); Saucer: H 11/8 × DIAM. 45/8 inches (2.9 × 11.7 cm) Marks: crossed swords with dots in underglaze blue on pommel and K.H.C. [Königliche Hof Conditorei] in puce 1985.DA.79a, b 10 Chicago and buying wholesale. The unfortunate thing is that the rarer items in which I deal do not come wholesale. Occasionally, I buy an entire collection and then dispose of some of the so-called decorative and minor items—to the trade. If you will let me know what things might interest you—I can keep you advised.” Warda did just that. To satisfy her longing for interesting marks, he found her a Meissen “Imari” teabowl with the K.H.C. mark (cat. 77), which she proudly showed to Ryland Scott, who instantly questioned its authenticity. Lautz defended his honor: “I have never yet sold a fake knowingly—in fact, this is the first time that any item I have ever sold has been called one.” He had to provide exhaustive explanations to convince her that the items were genuine and had a good provenance, adding: “If the facts are not as warranted, you may rest assured that I will refund your money, and offer my apologies.”14 His letter also provided prices for thirteen objects that Warda had selected from photographs. In the end, she bought only a Nymphenburg teacup, coffee cup, and saucer (cat. 389), and then introduced what became the leitmotif in her future transactions with dealers. Her inheritance—the porcelain fund— had been exhausted and she now had to account to her husband for her expenditures, so every penny made a difference. Lautz graciously conceded: “If you buy 4 or $500.00 worth, I will let you have a 10% discount. Most of the prices, as listed, are already low; I do not have the 57th Street mark-up. . . . I try to treat all my collectors fairly.” Warda continued to challenge the K.H.C. mark. She not only returned the saucer to Lautz for further verification, but also sent him several pieces she had purchased elsewhere but had decided were questionable as well. Adding insult to injury, she further suggested that the Japanese Palace inventory number on the first dish he had sold her in June might have been forged. In his letter of November 4, 1948, Lautz went to great lengths to convince her that everything was what it purported to be, and provided a long dissertation on soft-paste porcelain and how to distinguish it from hard-paste porcelain. He even admitted: “I do love a battle and it is all in fun.” By the end of 1948, his patience and scholarly generosity were rewarded. Within a period of six months, 11 wa r da st ev e ns sto u t Warda, while simultaneously acquiring English porcelain during trips to Chicago, bought thirteen pieces of Continental porcelain, seven pieces of English porcelain, and several books. A grateful Lautz surprised her at Christmas with the gift of an Ansbach salt cellar (cat. 236) from the collection of the renowned banker and collector J. Pierpont Morgan.15 Their friendship was sealed. William H. Lautz was a member of what might be considered the last generation of reputable and scholarly dealers—as eager to educate as to sell. His taste was refined and his stock, largely acquired abroad, was interesting and impeccable. Had Warda bought only from him, she would have assembled a slightly different but extraordinarily fine collection of eighteenth-century English, French, and German porcelain. But, with her innate spirit of adventure, she was developing her own taste, self-confidence, and sense of direction. 1949 The year 1949 marked the true turning point for the Stout Collection. In January, on their way to South America, the Stouts stopped in New York. On East 57th Street, Warda discovered the firms of Jas. A. Lewis & Son, Inc. and D. M. & P. Manheim, both shops with English roots. She bought several pieces of Continental porcelain. In Lima, she purchased a very expensive emerald and diamond ring—more than quadruple the price of any piece of porcelain she had bought heretofore. From this time forward, Charles supported her ceramic investments unstintingly. Home in Memphis, Warda found an article of particular interest: “Collecting Old Meissen Porcelain” by Ralph H. Wark.16 She underlined passages: “When I started my collection of Old Meissen, I determined to limit myself to [the] period before 1750. . . . I discovered that by specializing anyone can make a beginning, and over a period of time build up a good collection”; “During my long years of collecting I have adhered to the rules I set myself when I started. These are to be recommended to all collectors: confine yourself to your subject, and purchase only specimens which are in the best possible condition. In my own case I added: never buy a tea caddy that does not have its C at. 275 Höchst Soup Tureen, Cover, and Platter, ca. 1755 Soup Tureen with Cover: H 11 × W 14 ¼ × D 10½ inches (28 × 36.2 × 26.7 cm); Platter: H 2 × W 157/8 × D 12½ inches (5.1 × 40.3 × 31.8 cm) Marks: incised IS or SI and wheel marks in puce on the Soup Tureen and brown on the Platter 1985.DA.271a-c 12 Höchst I n 1745 , porcelain and faience painter Adam Friedrich von Löwenfinck arrived at Weisenau, near Mainz, from the Fulda faience factory with the intention of starting an enterprise for the manufacture of “Fayenceporzellan.”1 His experiments produced a highquality faience body later that year, but he lacked the capital to open a factory and continue his efforts to make porcelain. Although a true porcelain body continued to elude him, Löwenfinck and two partners, Frankfurt businessmen Johann Christoph Göltz and Göltz’s son-in-law Johann Felician Clarus, were encouraged to believe success would be forthcoming. Göltz had connections at court, and on February 10, 1746, the three men jointly submitted a request for a privilege to make porcelain at Höchst-am Main, about twenty-five miles from Mainz, in the electoral domain of Kurmainz.2 The head of state, the Elector and Archbishop of Mainz Johann Friedrich Carl von Ostein (1689–1763; r. 1743–63), was immediately receptive to the proposal. With other rulers of his time, he believed a porcelain factory would enhance the prestige of his realm, eliminate the court’s need to import porcelain, create goods for export, provide employment, and bolster the local economy. On March 1, 1746, less than three weeks after the application was submitted, Löwenfinck, Göltz, and Clarus were awarded a privilege for the exclusive right to manufacture porcelain in Kurmainz for a period of fifty years. In exchange, Löwenfinck was required to share his knowledge of the arcanum in writing with the electoral administration. Although the new factory was a private company, the elector encouraged the venture by granting concessions that included a six-year exemption from customs duties on wood for the kilns, imported raw materials, and exported porcelain. He also provided a suitable build13 C at. 2 6 7 C at. 270 Höchst Isabella’s Maid or Pantaloone from the Commedia dell’ arte, 1750–53 Model by Johann Christoph Ludwig von Lücke, 1750–53 H 8 × W 23/8 × D 3¾ inches (20.3 × 6 × 9.5 cm) Marks: incised NHI and G 1985.DA.344 Höchst Scaramouche or Dr. Balanzon from the Commedia dell’ arte, 1750–55 Model by Johann Christoph Ludwig von Lücke H 6¼ × W 2 × D 21/8 inches (15.9 × 5.1 × 5.4 cm) Marks: painter’s mark Z for Philipp Ziessler and impressed I and B 1985.DA.343 16 C at. 271 Höchst St. John the Evangelist, ca. 1753 Model probably by Johann Gottfried Becker, 1753 H 53/8 × W 2½ × D 2¼ inches (13.7 × 6.4 × 5.7 cm) Marks: wheel mark in iron red and impressed I 1985.DA.345 17 H ö ch st 1, 2, 3 4, 5, 6 Cat. 1 Meisse n Cat. 3 M e isse n Cat. 6 M e isse n Cup(?), 1710–13 Böttger stoneware H 33/8 × diam. 35/8 inches (8.6 × 9.2 cm) Unmarked 1985.DA.4 Cat. 2 Meisse n Tankard, 1710–13 Böttger engraved and polished stoneware H 51/8 × w 47/8 × d 3½ inches (13 × 12.4 × 8.9 cm) Unmarked 1985.DA.6 Cat. 4 M e isse n Teabowl and Saucer, 1715–27 Painted decoration possibly by a Dresden glass painter, ca. 1730; possibly by Johann Friedrich Meyer in the Dresden workshop of Christoph Konrad Hunger Teabowl: H 1 ¾ diam. 27/8 inches (4.4 × 7.3 cm); Saucer: H 7/8 × diam. 51/8 inches (2.2 × 13 cm) Unmarked 1985.DA.11a, b Ewer, 1710–13 Böttger stoneware Model attributed to Johann Jacob Irminger H 57/8 × w 53/8 × d 3 inches (14.9 × 13.7 × 7.6 cm) Unmarked 1985.DA.3 Teabowl and Saucer, 1710–15 Böttger black-glazed stoneware Teabowl: H 1¾ × diam. 33/8 inches (4.4 × 8.6 cm); Saucer: H 1¼ × diam. 51/8 inches (3.2 × 13 cm) Unmarked 1985.DA.7a, b Cat. 5 M e isse n Two-handled Beaker and Saucer, 1715–20 Beaker: H 3¼ × w 4 × d 27/8 inches (8.3 × 10.2 × 7.3 cm); Saucer: H 1 × diam. 5½ inches (2.5 × 14 cm) Unmarked 1985.DA.9a, b 22 7, 8, 9 10, 11, 12 Cat. 7 Meissen Cat. 10 M e isse n Teapot and Cover, 1715–30 Gold decoration possibly done in Augsburg H 4 × w 5½ × d 3¾ inches (10.2 × 14 x 9.5 cm) Unmarked 1985.DA.208a, b Cat. 8 Meissen “Pagod” Incense Burner, 1718–20 H 3¾ × w 2¾ × d 21/8 inches (9.5 × 7 × 5.4 cm) Unmarked 1985.DA.62 Cat. 11 M e isse n Teabowl and Saucer, 1717 Painted decoration by Johann Georg Funcke the Elder Teabowl: H 1¾ × diam. 27/8 inches (4.4 × 7.3 cm); Saucer: H 1½ × diam. 5 inches (3.8 × 12.7 cm) Unmarked 1985.DA.17a, b Cat. 9 Meissen Tea Canister and Cover, 1718–20 H 37/8 × w 3¼ × d 3 inches (9.8 × 8.3 × 7.6 cm) Unmarked 1985.DA.8a, b Cat. 1 2 M e isse n Teabowl and Saucer, ca. 1720 (porcelain) Painted decoration done in Holland, 1730–40 Teabowl: H 2 × diam. 3 inches (5.1 × 7.6 cm); Saucer: H 1 × diam. 51/8 inches (2.5 × 13 cm) Marks: incised former’s mark X for Johann Daniel Rehschuh 1985.DA.188a, b “Pagod” Incense Burner, 1718–20 H 4¼ × w 4 × d 3¼ inches (10.8 × 10.2 × 8.3 cm) Unmarked 1985.DA.64 23 se l ect e d co l l ect io n : m e isse n