This finely detailed Palissy style Portuguese plate is the creation of famed ceramicist Manuel Mafra (1829-1905). Mafra championed the ‘Palissy style’ in the 19th Century through his wonderful revivals and adaptations of the work of the 16th Century French potter, Bernard Palissy. Mafra worked in Caldas de Rainha, a small town which consequently became a national hub for the production of Palissy ware objects.
The plate, of circular form, shows a relief lizard and a snake entwined in a fight in a pond-bed setting, surrounding by furled water grass and beetles. The plate is rendered with exceptionally rich glazing, predominantly in intense greens and browns, and exhibits supreme depth and texture.
The reverse of the plate is marked ‘M. MAFRA / CALDAS / PORTUGAL’ and stamped ‘8’.