You couldn't fit this on your mantelpiece! World's largest vase sells for over £10,000
Last updated at 5:53 PM on 29th July 2011
Made by Royal Doulton, it is the largest ever made and was snapped up at auction in the U.S. for £10,625.
Dating from the late 19th century it is thought that the decorative piece was commissioned for an Indian Maharajah who would have paid a princely sum of £3,500.
This towering Royal Doulton vase that stands an astonishing 6ft 3ins high, made over £10,000 at auction
It is adorned with intricate floral designs by Florence Lewis - one of the Lambeth studio’s most skilled artists.
The ceramic - sporting dahlias among bamboo and exotic foliage - was included in the European furniture and decorative arts sale which took place at Skinner's auction house in Massachusetts this month.
Stuart Slavid, from the saleroom, said that the antique came through a dealer who acquired it in a private home: 'It had previously been purchased in a London sale in the 1980s.
'It's function is it's beauty as an art form and I personally believe the artistry translates better from a slight distance. The workmanship is first rate.'
Dating from the late 19th century it is thought that the decorative piece was commissioned for an Indian Maharajah (Maharajah Duleep Singh, 1852, by George Beechey)
Making it easier to transport the rare piece was manufactured in five separate pieces, with the collar, belly, base and handles slotting together and held together by its weight.
It is unknown if the collectable was ever delivered to the Indian Palace and it is believed that three similar pieces were also made.
Mr Slavid added: 'It is a Royal Doulton Lambeth faience floor vase and its mate was probably the centrepiece of the Doulton Exhibition at the Chicago World's Fair and was probably not manufactured as much for sale but as a show stopper at the fair.'
I personally believe the artistry translates better from a slight distance
The vase exhibited in Chicago's World Fair in 1893 is now at the Museum of Science and Industry in the city.
Faience pottery - now an ancient tradition - is created from clay earthenware with a specific glaze applied to make it a suitable surface to paint on and was a popular technique used by artists at the London-based factory.
John Sparks, the principal of the Lambeth School of Art in the 19th century, described Florence Lewis’ work: 'She has a remarkable power of design and a skill in painting that is seldom surpassed... Whether she is working out a large design or a small tile her energy and power are equally apparent.'
Founded by John Doulton in around 1815, Royal Doulton began life in London before moving to the to new headquarters in Stoke-on-Trent, Staffordshire in the 1950s.
In 2009 the prestigious pottery went into administration and was bought out by another firm which has continued using the name.
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