Posted 11 months ago
Harry Lindeman (1872 – 1948)
Born in Sydney to a wealthy family Harry was named after his grandfather Henry John Lindeman (1811-1881), who was the founder of the Australian wine industry. For anyone who knows Australian wine the names of Lindemans, Cawarra, Rutherglen and the Hunter are all part of wine history here. These are words that were part of Harry Lindeman’s life and background. He spent time in the family business at Cawarra and studied geology, but he finally retreated with his sister to the leafy suburb of Mosman in Sydney. There the two of them lived the good life and indulged their interests. Harry had a passion for butterflies and also for the decorative arts. It seems he had done illustrations of butterflies in his youth for a company producing scientific books. In 1920 he joined the Society of Arts and Crafts in New South Wales and exhibited his work there from 1920 until his death in 1948. He did not have his own kiln and would fire his pots at the Sydney Technical College.
This vase has gilt decoration and the butterfly decoration is similar to another pot illustrated on page 220 of Australian Art Pottery 1900 to 1950. Edited by Kevin Fahy, John Freeland, Keith Free and Andrew Simpson.
The vase was bought at a Saturday morning market in Rozelle a few years back; as such it was a recent purchase of Australian pottery. I’d bought this vase and another couple of things and had left them with a dealer friend/ex-student while I went to get some money for a vase that I was going to buy from him – a Bernard Sahm vase that I have posted on CW.
When I returned with the money my friend was speaking to one of the authors of the Australian Art Pottery 1900 to 1950 book. My friend and I spoke to him about this new vase and they asked what else I had bought that morning; I mentioned the Harry Lindeman vase. The author then told me a little more than I already knew about Lindeman. I’d thought that it was an example of “some moths at dusk”, but he then told me about Lindeman's interest in butterflies. He had written the article on Lindeman in the book and it was just about ready for publication. He was quite taken with the pot and I went home pleased with myself that day with two good pieces of Australian pottery: one modern and the other an early studio piece.
These pieces by Lindeman are rare. It is the only one I am aware of with gilded decoration. His work is represented at the Powerhouse museum and the Art Gallery of New South Wales here in Sydney, Australia.
Circular vase, earthenware, with wide low foot ring, covered in mottled light blue drip glaze and gilded butterfly design, Maker's mark H. Lindeman incised on base.
Harry Lindeman, Sydney, New South Wales, Australia, c.1920.