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Maker(s):Kocks, Adriaen
Title:tea canister
Date Made:ca. 1700
Type:Food Service
Materials:ceramic: tin-glazed earthenware (Delftware) decorated in cobalt blue; base metal: copper; cork
Place Made:The Netherlands; Holland; Delft; The Greek A Factory
Measurements:overall: 4 1/2 x 3 1/4 x 2 1/4 in.; cm
Accession Number:  HD 1921X
Museum Collection:  Historic Deerfield

Dutch delft, rectangular tea canister decorated in blue with a round, ringed opening and a copper top with ring and a cork plug (not original). The base is marked "AK", for Adriaen Kocks and with a three-petaled stylized clover. The Greek A (De Griexe A) Factory, founded by Wouter van Eenhoorn (d. 1679) in 1674, passed to his son Samuel as a wedding present in 1678. After Samuel's death his widow sold The Greek A Factory to Adriaen Kocks, who managed and furthered the factory's reputation until his death in 1701. This canister exhibits the beautiful painterly style of Delft artisans. The decoration, inspired by Chinese Transitional period porcelains made in Jingdezhen during the 6 decades of political transition between the Ming and Qing dynasties (1620-1683), combines flowering shrubs and intricate chrysanthemum scrolls. The use of trek, the technique of outlining designs in bluish or purplish black pigment generally attributed to Samuel van Eenhoorn, highlights the design. Attention to detail is evident in the artful and whimsical corner decoration of a spider hanging from its web; the two smaller ends are decorated with a center floral medallion surrounded by scrolls. Rectangular flasks and tea canisters with threaded lids came into common use for storing tea around 1700. In Japan, square glass or pewter flasks became the models for the large-scale manufacture of square porcelain flasks intended for export to the Dutch market. By about 1675, The Greek A Factory was producing square flasks with screw lids based on Japanese export pieces. Whether those flasks inspired this smaller tea canister remains uncertain.

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