This year Moorcroft are marking their centenary with a travelling exhibition put together out of pottery, drawings and written archive material loaned by the Moorcroft Museum.
In this way, the art pottery would be seen to have reached out to its audience in the United Kingdom to show, with just 100 exhibits, how Moorcroft sprang to life in 1913 and why it is still alive to this day.
Translated into Latin, the words 'at my own wish' become Meo Voto, the name given to a timeless poppy design by its creator, Rachel Bishop and right through to the 30th June 2014, Meo Voto will travel with the Centennial Exhibition wheresoever it goes. At each museum and gallery where the exhibition puts down its roots, Meo Voto will be there.
For the people of Staffordshire, their only chance of acquiring this highly collectable vase, complete with centenary backstamp will be at The Potteries Museum during the two day launch event on the 8th and 9th November 2013.
Designed on the 41/4 shape (height 4"/10cm), Meo Voto has its origins in the 'big poppy' designs of William Moorcroft dating back to the mid 1920s. There is a strongly-held view that William used his 'big poppies' to reflect his mood at the time.
In his biography of the artist-potter, Behind the Glaze, author, Neil Swindells, draws attention to the fact that many big poppy pieces have dark blue ground colours - even black, whilst others spring to joyous life in shades of yellow, rich cream or gold.
Rachel's poppies in Meo Voto are large, coloured in shades of dark crimson with yellow stamens set against a milky pink ground colour.
The impact of William Moorcroft on ceramic design is almost immeasurable. At a stroke, the gilded excesses of Victorian life were swept aside and in their place came landscapes, flowers, colourful toadstools and even fish, all symbols of the natural world, and together they became heralds of the birth of the Arts and Crafts Movement.
If anything, it was landscape design which first caught the imagination of the high society of late Victorian England. First registered in September 1902, landscape design regularly appeared in William's work right through to the early 1940s.
Some say that it was adapted to suit his moods: others that it was adapted to reflect the era in which it was re-introduced and in 2013, William's original Dawn design has been taken from its archives at Moorcroft as a tribute to its founding father, William Moorcroft himself. Called Second Dawn, two versions of William's iconic landscape design are available, each of them designed on the timeless 32/5 shape (height 5”/12.5cm).
Both are released as numbered editions; both would have been originally made c1928, the year W. Moorcroft Limited acquired its Royal Warrant, and both carry the geometric chevron symbols which William used to fleetingly acknowledge the Art Deco fashions of the time.
Even so, the two vases move down separate colour pathways. The first uses the almost hallowed 'blue-on-blue' colourway which first appeared in 1897/8, whilst the second comes with a rare depth of colour added to its clotted-cream clay body in the form of the rich autumnal shades of William Moorcroft's Eventide design.
Priced at £295 (blue) and £395 (Eventide), the Second Dawn duo are likely to have a strong collector following. As a result, Moorcroft is sadly obliged to reserve the right to discontinue one or both designs at any time without notice.
A new Legacy Collection is rumoured to be launched upon the Centenary anniversary of the day Moorcroft's factory opened her doors. This collection will be on display from 16th September 2013 at the Moorcroft Heritage Visitor Centre and Museum. All pieces will hold Centenary Backstamps and limited editions are set to sell out quickly during this celebratory period.
To celebrate the birth of the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge's first child, the third in line to the throne, comes a numbered edition vase designed by Nicola Slaney.
A Royal Arrival HRH Prince George of Cambridge is the latest piece in what has become a veritable Royal Collection of commemorative Moorcroft art pottery. The new born prince is depicted fast asleep in the grounds of Windsor Castle. A smile creeps across Prince George's face upon the revelation that yes, tiny prince, this vase has been created by Moorcroft especially for you.
A Royal Arrival is available to order until 31st December 2013 from authorised Moorcroft retailers worldwide. Made entirely by hand in Stoke-on-Trent, England, since 1897, for collectors around the world.
For more informaton visit www.moorcroft.com