Bacchus Vase - Art by Carl Knoll
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Carl Knoll
Bacchus Vase

ca. 1905

About

BACCHUS VASE by KARLSBADER PORZELLANFABRIK CARL KNOLL (KARLSBAD PORCELAIN FACTORY CARL KNOLL), hand-painted porcelain with metallic glazing. The tall ovoid cylindrical form tapering slightly at the mouth and the base, stamped in red on the underside with the manufacturer’s mark: a crown over a lozenge containing the word “Carlsbad” and “MADE IN AUSTRIA” underneath; c. 1905, measuring: 12.5 x 7 The vase’s dramatic subject of dark passion is heightened by the contrast it makes with the vase’s multi-colored metallic body. The molded face, grape leaves and vine take on a greenish tinge like old moss-covered stone. The golden floral hair adornments, grape clusters and golden rootstock which forms the vase’s lip and handles all create a quality of otherworldliness. Smooth, well-articulated features on this androgynous head accentuate the sensual rather than privilege measured reason. The eyes are open, but the gaze is askance. Nostrils are flared on the long, narrow nose. The mouth opens wide to reveal the tongue and both sets of teeth. The long, flowing locks of hair sweep across the brow and down the sides of the face to join just under the chin in a subtle suggestion of a goat’s chin whiskers. The typical devices associated with Bacchus, the god of wine, such as grape vines and an allusion to a goat, are present. Symbolist in style, the vase, however, is really an allegory where Bacchanalian attributes are attached to a modern morality. The greenish tonality adds a rather ghoulish effect. The eyes and interior of the mouth, with accents in ochre, take on a sickly parlor. This is not so much a face of care-free debauchery, but a bodiless apparition seemingly lost and haunted by unknown and unnamed horrors. About the manufacturer: The town of Fischern (now Rybare), near Carlsbad, Bohemia, in the Karlovy Vary region was a good source of kaolin, a key ingredient for making hard-paste porcelain. Carl Knoll founded his porcelain factory there in 1848. His sons, Adolf, Carl and Ludwig continued to run the factory after Carl, Sr.’s death in 1868, growing the modest operation into a flourishing one with over 400 employees by 1913. The factory produced utilitarian and decorative porcelain and ceramic ware until the end of the Second World War. A significant amount of their production was intended for the export market. The firm opened a showroom in Rybare, furnished in the Art Nouveau style, in 1905.

Details

  • Artist
    Carl Knoll (Austrian)
  • Creation Year
    ca. 1905
  • Dimensions
    H 12.5 in. x W 7 in.H 31.75 cm x W 17.78 cm
  • Gallery Location
    Chicago, IL
  • Reference Number
    LU46732127153
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About the Seller

5 / 5
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Located in Chicago, IL
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