Delft, circa 1760
The modelled cow with its head turned to one side is placed on a rectangular stand with chamfered corners. The animal is painted in polychrome. The neck, the back and just above the tail are decorated with polychrome garlands of flowers. The cow’s head and back are accentuated in blue and its hide is dotted with blue spots. The hooves are painted purple, the horns are yellow and the snout and tongue are executed in purple and brown-red. The sides of the green stand are marbled in purple, yellow, and brown-red.
Dimensions: height 20 cm / 7.87 in., length 16,5 cm / 6.49 in., width 9,5 cm / 3.74 in.
Together with dogs, horses and parrots, cows are the most frequently modelled animals in eighteenth century Dutch Delftware. They were put on the market between 1740 and 1780 and were produced by nearly every Delftware pottery. Only two types are known: a reclining cow and a standing cow. The latter could be made as a milking group, together with a farmer and his wife. The two types were executed in a great variety of form, dimension and colour combination. They can be monochrome white, blue and white, or polychrome. Some monochrome white models were cold-painted. Outside Delft, figures of cows were also made on a small scale in tile factories in Amsterdam. The use of floral wreaths on cows or bulls harks back to a seventeenth century custom. Every year the butchers guild held a parade with the prize-winning cows and bulls, which were lavishly adorned with flowers and floral wreaths (Eliëns, p. 236).
T.M. Eliëns, Delfts aardewerk. Geschiedenis van een nationaal product, deel II, Zwolle/The Hague 2001
Price on request