The aesthetic movement can be seen as the bridge to the arts and crafts style. It often had formalised, restrained ornamentation, and was heavily influenced by Japanese decoration, knowledge of which flowed to the West in the nineteenth century through oriental imports. It rebelled against the lavish ornamentation and over-embellishment of the high Victorian period, and sought a purer, more precise level of expression.
Now merged with Royal Doulton, Mintons Ltd, was a major ceramics manufacturing company, originated with Thomas Minton (1765-1836) the founder of “Thomas Minton and Sons”, who established his pottery factory in Stoke-upon-Trent, Staffordshire, England, in 1793, producing earthenware and from 1798, bone china. They made differing aesthetic movement pieces in collaboration with Dr Christopher Dresser of which this may well be an example of. Dresser’s first designs for Minton pre-date the Paris Exhibition of 1867, but the exact date of this connection is not certain. Often regarded as the most important British designer of the later 19th century, at this time he was beginning what became a strong interest in ceramic design, leading him to work with several companies. We cannot find this particular example anywhere else.
Of a wonderfully imposing size, somehow remaining understated and brilliantly effective.