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Teapot by Christopher Dresser, 1878-9

Christopher Dresser, a pioneering 19th century designer, worked with a wide range of materials throughout his lengthy and varied career.

This teapot, manufactured by the silversmith and electroplating firm of Hukin & Heath in Birmingham, is a brilliant example of Dresser’s unconventional style and willingness to experiment with form in ordinary, household objects. Some of Dresser’s metalwork, including this teapot, exhibits strikingly rigorous and stark forms in astonishing pre-figurement of the Bauhaus manner. However, his style is better understood as an extreme version of High Victorian Aestheticism.

Teapot by Christopher Dresser
Purchased with generous support of the National Heritage Memorial Fund, the Art Fund, the American Friends of the V&A and an anonymous donor, the Friends of the V&A, the J. Paul Getty Jr. Charitable Trust and a private consortium led by John S.M. Scott.
Museum number: M.5:1 to 2-2006 – © Victoria and Albert Museum, London, 2006

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