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•D2443. Pair of Blue and White Miniature Cachepots

Delft, circa 1760

Both marked D-8 and 5-0, attributed to Jan Theunis Dextra, owner of De Grieksche A (The Greek A) factory from 1757 to 1765

A pair of blue and white miniature cachepots, both cups with two handles attached, featuring a fountain scene on one side with a pied de stalle flanked by two fish spouting water, a flowing urn on top, all rising from a shell, in the background, a mountain range is set under a sky with birds in flight, the opposite side with a strolling couple in the hills, positioned between two small trees, with birds in flight above the couple, the foot with Chinese symbols on both sides.

Heights 10.5 cm. and 10.7 cm. (4.1 in. and 4.2 in.)

Private Dutch collection

Several similar examples are known with respectively a ‘D-8 i-i’ mark and remnants of what seems to be the ‘ITD with a cipher underneath, which is attributed to Jan Theunis Dextra, owner of de Grieksche A (the Greek A) factory from 1757 to 1765. The identification of the ‘D’ mark remains unclear, as a comparison of marked pieces reveals variations in styles used in different periods. Marion van Aken- Fehmers (1943-2021), a prominent researcher of Delftware, examined objects marked with a ‘D’ in the collection of the Kunstmuseum The Hague. Her findings indicated that some pieces could be dated after 1720, making them too late for production at the De Dissel (The Pole) factory, as previously suggested by the former director of the then municipal museum of The Hague, H.E. van Gelder, which closed in 1702.1 An important discovery is a spittoon in the collection of the Openlucht Museum Arnhem dated 1762 and marked with a ‘D’ in combination with an ‘A’, utilized by the Greek A, with inventory number NOM.47816-75.2 Given its dating and marks, the spittoon can be attributed to Jan Theunis Dextra. This suggests that Jan Theunis Dextra used various marks. The striking similarities between this pair and the marked counterparts strongly support the likelihood of an attribution to Jan Theunis Dextra.

A similar pair with the same decoration is housed in the collection of Dutch Ceramic Museum Het Princessehof in Leeuwarden, with inv. no. BP-2010- 045.B. Another similar size and decorated pair has been sold at a Dutch auction house in 2016. One of this pair shows remains of what is likely ‘ITD’ above a number, for Jan Theunis Dextra, owner of De Grieksche A (The Greek A) from 1757 to 1765. A larger, 18 cm. high, single cachepot with the same decoration, marked ‘D8 ii’ (the D and 8 and two ‘i’s’ both separated with a horizontal line), also used by Jan Theunis Dextra, is in the collection of Rijksmuseum Twenthe.

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