An outstanding modernist silver five piece tea and coffee set by Ronald Stevens, made whilst a student at the Royal College of Art. The pieces are assayed from 1959-1962. The tea pot, dated 1959, carries the mark of Thomas James Boucher (all other pieces carry Stevens’ mark), resident craftsman at the School of Silversmithing and Jewellery, Royal College of Art. Ronald Stevens registered his own mark in February 1959 so it may be that Boucher made the teapot, probably given the level of skill required to execute what is a complex design.
The set comprises tea and coffee pot, sugar with tongs, milk jug and tea strainer. The design has a clear Scandinavian influence but also represents early distinctive British post war design that was coming to fruition at this time. The RCA, with Professor Robert Goodden heading the School of Silversmithing and Jewellery, were at the forefront of this transition. See “Designer British Silver”, by John Andrew and Derek Styles.
Ronald Stevens (c 1936-2010) was one of the four ex RCA students that formed the innovative Silver Work Shop soon after he graduated from the RCA in 1963. Two others included the better known Ian Calvert and Keith Redfern. The Silver Work Shop closed in 1972 and Stevens went on to teach metalwork at the Central School of Art.
Maker: Ronald Stevens (tea pot Thomas Boucher)
Designer: Ronald Stevens
Marks: , London, “RWS”, TJB”, “d-g”
Material: Sterling silver, wicker
Size: Coffee pot 22 cm high, teapot 18 cm diameter
Weight : Heavy!