A large Walker & Tolhurst bowl

Price range: Sold

A large Walker and Tolhurst silver bowl attributed to Gilbert Marks. Dated for London 1894.  Gilbert Marks was perhaps the most skilled craftsman of his generation and in his short career produced some magnificent pieces of arts and crafts silver.  The bowl is decorated with repousse wild flowers believed to represent Oxeye daisies.  This piece is unusually not signed but has all the characteristics of Gilbert Marks’ early work. It possibly pre-dates the period in which Walker Tolhurst allowed Marks to sign his pieces and prior to his registering his own GM mark.

Maker:  Gilbert Marks (attributed) for Walker and Tolhurst

Designer: Gilbert Marks (attributed, not signed)

Date : 1894

Marks: W.W.B.T, London, date letter “T”

Material: Sterling silver

Condition: Excellent, slight rubbing to some repousse

Size: 23cm diameter, 8.5cm high

Weight : 761 grams, 26.8 0z

SKU: A79 Category:


The Magazine Art reviews Marks’ work in January 1897 at an exhibition of his work at 80 Aldersgate Street: “Going direct to nature, he skillfully transfers the blossoms of wild flowers to his graceful cups and other cups. The Art Journal reviews another exhibition of his work in the August of the same year at the the showrooms of Johnson, Walker & Tolhurst, a bowl very similar to the present lot is illustrated. His distinctive style of work received glowing reviews, his work “is exceedingly pleasant to the cultivated eye.”

In the initial period of collaboration with Johnson, Walker and Tolhurst, the objects bore their sponsor’s mark and 1895 pieces appear to also carry Marks’ fascimile signature. 1894 pieces such as this are very rare. Gilbert Marks registered his own maker’s mark of ‘GM’ at Goldsmiths’ Hall in 1896 and he continues the practice of the fascimile. It is interesting that the association with J. W. And T. clearly continues as they are still holding exhibitions of the work. The earliest recorded piece bearing Marks’ signature dates from 1895/6 and the latest from 1902.

F. Miller, ‘Some Gold, Silver, and Coppersmiths,’ Art Journal, November 1896, p.347ff.
‘Gilbert Marks: An Artist in Silver,’ The Magazine of Art, January 1897, p.158ff.
‘The Arts and Indutries of Today,’ Art Journal, August 1897, p251ff.
Obituary, The Burlington Magazine, Vol 7, no 27, June 1905, p.243ff.