1 3/4 x 12 1/8 x 12 1/8 in. (4.4 x 30.8 x 30.8 cm)
Jan Theunis Dextra
Medium and Support:
Gift of Mrs. John Oothout
Location: Not currently on view
Delftware is a generic term that describes a type of tin-glazed earthenware made in The Netherlands. The industry was based in the small town of Delft near the city of Rotterdam, a major seaport accessed by canals from all directions. This degree of access was critical to the industry’s success, as plates, vases, and all forms of pottery were exported widely throughout Europe and as far afield as the Middle East. The industry reached its height in the 1680s, when about 2,000 potters were employed by over 30 manufactories—all in a town with a population of only 24,000.
The mass production of Delftware emerged in the early 1600s because of the strong trade between The Netherlands and China. The Dutch East Indian Company imported millions of pieces of Chinese porcelain; they were, however, affordable to only the wealthiest Europeans. Delftware, much of which mimics the patterns and blue and white color schemes of eastern porcelain, was a less expensive and more easily obtainable substitute.
[Label text from It Came From the Vault exhibition, 2013]