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A Wartime Figure of Winston Churchill, 1941
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A Wartime Figure of Winston Churchill, 1941

Measurements: Height: 23cm (9in)

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Bone china. Rare coloured figure of the Prime Minister. Designed by Eric Olsen for Copeland Spode, circa 1940-41 and produced prior to the introduction of utility white for the home and transatlantic markets.

Eric Olsen was born in Norway in 1903. He studied at the Oslo School of Art, St. Martin's School of Art, London and at the faience studio at Sèvres. He worked at Wedgwood in 1931 designing a range of Art Deco relief-moulded ornamental earthenware. He joined Spode in 1932 and is believed to have been given creative carte blanche as 'Designer and Modeller'. He is best remembered for his art deco animal figures, Royal Jade and Velamour glazes. However Olsen's greatest successes at Spode were his Toby Jugs of Churchill and Franklin D. Roosevelt.

Olsen retained close ties with his native country. An exhibition of of his studio type wares was opened by the Queen of Norway in London in 1937, and in August 1938 he made an official visit to the Scandinavian Potteries following his holiday in Norway. In 1942 Olsen left the Spode company to join the Norwegian Quartermaster General as a camouflage expert. After the Second World War he emigrated to the United States where he became chief designer at Haeger in Illinois.
 

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