Teatime at the Met

On 01 March 2019, by La Gazette Drouot
Attributed to John Bartlam (Cain Hoy, South Carolina, 1765-1770), an American porcelain teapot,
c. 1765-69, printed in underglaze blue, height: 9 cm.
Salisbury (England), 20 February, Woolley & Wallis.

This very rare teapot, estimated £10,000/20,000, was purchased for £460,000 by a London dealer on behalf of the Metropolitan Museum in New York. Tamzin Corbett of auctioneers Woolley & Wallis in Salisbury, Southern England, said the owner was unaware of the item’s value when he bought it for £15 at a local antiques fair in the British midlands. The teapot was made by the John Bartlam porcelain factory — the first known American porcelain manufacturer — in Cain Hoy, South Carolina, in the 1760s. One side depicts two cranes beneath a tall palm tree beside figures in a sampan and a solitary figure in another boat, and the reverse a version of the Man on the Bridge pattern, the eponymous structure linking small islands in a Chinese pagoda landscape.

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