1930s Karakashian Balian Vase - Jerusalem Pottery (Sold)

Stock No. 308 

An original hand decorated vase from the Karakashian-Balian workshop in colours with the illustration of a deer on both sides with upturned head in a meadow of flowers.
Nurith Kenaan-Kedar of Tel-Aviv University has written a book and an internet treatise on this pottery (see ref.1 below) and tells us that "The three Armenian ceramic artists' families led by David Ohannessian the painter and his partners Nishan Balian the potter (1882-1964) and Megerdish Karakashian the painter (1895-1963) were invited in 1919 to the Holy Land by the newly founded Pro-Jerusalem Society for the purpose of renovating the tiles of the Dome of the Rock in Jerusalem." (Interestingly, C. R. Ashbee, a well known luminary of the Arts and Crafts movement in Britain, was the Civic Advisor and Secretary of the Pro-Jerusalem Society at that time.) They had come from Kutahya in Western Turkey and brought with them the skills and designs associated with Kutahya and Iznik artistic traditions. Having completed that work in the early 1920s they decided to stay and set up a pottery in Jerusalem.
This vase bears a marked similarity in design to a plate circa 1930 illustrated within the treatise mentioned above - (see ref. 2 below).The decoration of the deer and foliage are virtually identical.
The vase is marked to the base JERUSALEM and bears a device below which we are informed are an interlocking K and B in Armenian (for the two names Karakashian and Balian). The top part which looks like a 9 is the K and the bottom half which looks like a 7 is the B. (see third image above.)
The work of these potters has received much aclaim and patronage and their hand painted tiles adorn many important buildings in Jerusalem including the Presidential residence. Their work has also been exhibited at the Smithsonian Museum in Washington.
Excellent condition.

Dimensions :
height : 8 inches

Ref. 1. The Armenian Ceramics of Jerusalem, Three Generations, by Nurith Kenaan-Kedar.Published in 2003
Ref. 2.
More information at these links below Smithsonian exhib.