One of my favourite makers of West German Pottery is Carstens. This has evolved over the past few years as our collection has (not literally) exploded, allowing us to make groups of similar forms, glazes, colours and factories. Carstens is a company that I consistently find myself wanting to collect and keep. From gorgeous, delicate glazes, through to dramatic colours and original, space-age influenced shapes: Carstens is the company that shows diversity, originality and sometimes, just plain fun.
These pots are all about sophistication. Huge thanks to Aidan for taking pictures for me!
These pots were bought on the last Germany Roadtrip, by Aidan. I’m especially pleased with the little dish. If I was so inclined, I’d keep bon-bons in it, or rings perhaps. As I’m too worried about bashing it, it’s on the shelf now with the others.
From left to right: 7507-27, 652-13, 663-18, 1245-25, 638 (no size given), 1701 (dish), 693-35.
I can’t remember if I’ve posted up this one before, but just in case:
The blue Ankara glaze is not the only Carstens collection we have. Alright, it’s me, mostly. I’m not convinced Aidan likes them as much as me but he’s willing to go along with it to keep me happy. Which is good enough for me!
From left to right: 1520-25, little one is unmarked or extremely difficult to read, 598-23.
These black ones – which we also refer to as Ankara, but I’m sure they probably have a different name – seem to even less common than the blue variety. I love the drama of the colour – the focus is on the contrast of textures within the glaze, with a cheeky peek of turquoise inside.
As a complete departure from these delicate, dramatic glazes comes one of the most famous Carstens glazes. Made famous by its inclusion in Mark Hill’s Fat Lava book, is the 7090-50. Ours comes with a little friend:
Both of us adore these pots and their glaze. The colours, the design, the shape, the size – everything about the 7090 is bombastic and fun. The plant pot is now a brilliant added extra.
I think these pots from Carstens show the immense diversity within the West German Pottery field; it’s that which keeps us collectors collecting. There is so much more to WGP than the ‘Fat Lava’ term which is gaining recognition more and more. These delicate, delightful and downright daring glazes are proof if you need it.
- 60s Spage Age West German Pottery (littleowlski.wordpress.com)