Friday, 27 January 2012

Cathrineholm Lotus enamelware

When I first came across Cathrineholm enamelware. I like many people thought that it was produced in Norway by a lady called Cathrine Holm, or maybe it was just designed by her, but I soon discovered that this classic design was actually produced by the metal working foundry company Cathrineholm that manufactured wrought iron, chains, nails and agriculture equipment, later moving onto enamelare, until a fire caused its closure in 1972.
There are many designs of Cathrineholm enamelware, some more popular that others. Probably the most well known designer has to be award winning, Grete Prytz Kittelsen. Born in 1917, Grete worked as an artist, goldsmith and enamel designer, and won numerous awards, she is also known as the “Queen of scandinavian design”
Cathrineholms most famous design, has to be the lotus ware pattern, a simple iconic pattern, which has become a timeless classic and highly sort after by collectors, for its striking design & functionality. Most people assume the lotus pattern was designed by Grete prytz Kittlesen, due to the shape and stucture, and the fact that so many Cathrineholm items where were designed by Grete Kittelsen.
However this is where the story takes a twist, it is infact Arne Clausen, we have to thank for this wonderful piece of design. Arne Clausen was an artist and worked at the factory as a decorator, apparently Clausens designs were added to kittelsens, without her knowledge. It is said that Grete Kittelsen, really didn't care for the pattern, and believed the collection should be void of decoration.
So we have both Arne Clausen and Grete Kittlesen, to thank for some of the most influential designs of the Scandinavian Art movement.
Arne Clausen should really get the recognition he deserves, so please spread the word. His family have recently allowed to produce ceramic bowls incorporating the stunning Iconic Lotus pattern.

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