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Ambleside Pottery was established by George Cook in the early 1950’s. Cook had studied in London but decided to retreat from the city and set up a studio in the Lake District. In Ambleside he found an ideal site for his studio, an abandoned corn mill by Stock Ghyll.
Cook developed distinctive forms of decoration including sgraffito. Underglaze colours, blue, brown or green were banded over the dried white clay pot, usually in a panel surrounded with black underglaze. The coloured layer was then carved away to produce a white decoration. Shallow shapes such as bowls and plant pots were then spray glazed. Deeper shapes were biscuit fired before heavy white glaze poured inside, and thinly painted onto the decoration. The panels were then waxed and dipped in black glaze. These techniques were used by employees on their own thrown, jiggered or cast ware. Cook himself was a master potter producing many individual thrown or constructed pieces, mostly in stoneware clay with iron oxide decoration.
Cook sold the business to Brian Jackson in 1968 who continued to make Ambleside Pottery, keeping the two distinct lines of white semi-porcelain and reduction fired stoneware. He also developed his own innovative pots as did his employees. F.T. Vergauwen developed many such as ash glazes for the stoneware and the sgraffito decorators adapted the technique to produce pictorial pots using underglaze colours to produce a range of wildlife designs on the white clay background. The pottery closed in the early 1980’s.
AMBLESIDE (see photo)
1 3/4 inches x 1 1/4 inches
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