Art nouveau, Arts and crafts
Price range: £2,250
For sale is this really authentic arts and crafts Liberty Cymric four handled cup or bowl by Oliver Baker. A really striking piece, the bowl is studded with turquoise stones. Like most of Baker’s early Liberty designs it is a very good gauge of silver and very good “in the hand”.
This drinking vessel is model 552 in the Liberty sketch book (page 30). I believe the inspiration for this bowl was an ancient vessel that can be found sketched in Baker’s sketch book (held in the Baker family archive, Shakespeare Birthplace Trust Library, Stratford), as shown in “other images”. Baker was an antiquarian, as well as artist and, briefly, a designer, and it is quite possible this piece was inspired by a bowl he was selling.
Condition of the silver is excellent. The turquoise boulder stones are showing underlying stone in parts, with some cracking to the turquoise .
The bowl is fully hallmarked for Birmingham 1899 – early in the Cymric joint venture between Haselers and Liberty. Most 1899 pieces still retain Liberty’s London mark. Please see my article on Baker at this link if you wish to read more about him and his work.
Maker: Liberty & Co
Designer: Oliver Baker
Date : 1899
Marks: L&Co, Birmingham, “z”
Material: Sterling silver, turquoise
Size: Height 12.5 cm, max diameter across handles, 7.75 cm high
Weight : 250 grams, 8.8 oz