20/05/2014 Ceramics & Glass
Shown here is a piece of Moorcroft 'Florian Ware', recently sold at McTear's and from a range that is always hugely popular.
This three-handled vase. Invented and developed by William Moorcroft whilst working for the firm of James Mcintyre & Co.
William Moorcroft had begun working for Macintyre in 1897, when he was just 24 and five years later his Florian ware pottery won him a gold medal at the 1904 St Louis International exhibition. Always one never to miss an opportunity, he unusually and rather immodestly signed his name on his pieces. This really brought attention not only to the firm but to him personally.
In due course the extent to which his success had overshadowed Macintyre's other manufacturing activities resulted in resentment on the part of his employers, culminating in their decision in 1912 to close down his studio. He then set up his own company and the following year production of his pottery was transferred to a brand new factory nearby.
The Moorcroft factory produced an extensive array of moderately-priced domestic tableware items in addition to its famous tubelined, hand-painted art pottery. Moorcroft's reputation was enhanced when Queen Mary, a keen collector of his works, granted him a royal warrant in 1928. Shortly before the death of William in 1945, his elder son, Walter Moorcroft, took control of the business, which he continued to develop. The company's royal warrant was re-issued in his name in 1946.