Tuesday, May 13, 2008
The Single Most Beautiful Teacup (and saucer) In The World
Reading through this blog, I doubt one would get the idea that what I do for my real work (for which I get paid and have health insurance etc.) is to handle court matters involving the state custody of mentally retarded would-be felons, or that I used to prosecute crimes of domestic violence and sex assault. With a jobs like those, you wouldn't expect that what I find really exciting is spotting a bit of Royal Doulton or Mintons in a box lot at auction, or some old college pennants, or a drawing or painting or etching that looks like it came from the 1920s or '30s, or a tea cup on the shelf of a local antique store. But it's true. Garrison Keillor once wrote in a story that if you really want to get people talking, don't ask them about their jobs, ask them about their hobbies. I am glad to have my present job; we all need a paycheck and health insurance and at least it's not Dilbert work, but what really gets me going these days is treasure hunting.
A teacup!? you say. This blog is descending into old fashioned ladies-pages treacle. But isn't it true that a teacup, so often interpreted and by so many artisans (and artists), that it can be venerated as a work of art? This little survivor was sitting on the shelf yesterday at my favorite antique store in Waterbury, VT. The shop, called M. Lewis, is in an old corner block building in the center of downtown. Yesterday M(artha) Lewis was minding the store herself. She's in her upper 70s, I think, but age has not dimmed her charms. I love her stuff so much (an honorary 70-something myself?) I was keeping her store my little secret in the Blogospere til now. M. Lewis told me as I paid ($16) that she's just back from a 10-day trip to Scotland. Naturally we had a brief natter about the UK and the Isle of Sky (a place she says I should definitely go and visit. I agreed of course).
As for this cup, it was made by Rosenthal in occupied Germany, as the mark shows. I think it is decorated with real silver. I normally gravitate to English pottery but this, among a shelf of teacups, was irresistible. Art. Yes, why not. I read once that architects become famous for their ability to design a chair. In a chair you can find a design for a whole city. So, why not in a teacup?
Off to work. I have two status conferences this morning in cases I am working on but my big excitement for the day will be to get back to M. Lewis for a plate I saw yesterday... Stay tuned.