Postcard Image

Postcard Image
As the Victorian era passed into the Edwardian and Roaring Twenties, a market developed for bisque and china bawdy novelties and figurines of women in revealing outfits. Although now most of these figurines seem more coy and cute than ribald and risque, in their time they symbolized the casting off of the perceived restraints of the Victorian era.

These little lovelies included bathing beauties, who came clad in swimsuits of real lace or in stylish painted beach wear, as well as mermaids, harem ladies, and nudies, who were meant to wear nothing more than an engaging smile. Also produced were flippers, innocent appearing figurines who reveal a bawdy secret when flipped over, and squirters, figurines that were meant to squirt water out of an appropriate orifice.

Most were manufactured in Germany from the late 1800s through the 1930s, often showing remarkable artistry and imagination, with Japan entering the market during World War I.

Sunday, December 4, 2011

Bubbly Belles

This is the time of the year of popping corks and crystal glasses filled with golden champagne and sparkling wine.  These two bisque beauties appear to bubble with glee and goodwill as they raise their glasses filled with their favorite sparkling beverage.


 Her voluptuous form barely contained by her fanciful outfit, this lovely lass leans against a giant champagne cork as she prepares to pour some wine.  Of excellent sharp bisque, she is 5 inches long and 3 inches high.

The cork, of green precolored bisque, is open at the top to hold matches or toothpicks.  On the back is incised "Kaiser Sect Kloss u Forster."  The wine house Kloss and Foerster was founded by Moritz and Julius Kloss and Carl Foerster in Freyburg, Germany in 1856.  "Kaiser Sect" may refer to the fact that Kaiser Wilhelm II was said to be fond of the firm's sparkling wine, known as "Sekt."

No doubt by the same maker and from the same series, this buxom belle briefly clad in blue shows off her shapely legs in bright yellow stockings.  At first I thought she was holding a folded fan in her  raised left hand, but closer inspection shows that it is champagne flute overflowing with foam.  She is  4.25 inches wide and 4 inches tall.  The front of her cork is incised "Henkell Trocken," another German wine company, founded in 1856, known for its sparkling wine.  I wonder if these pieces were produced specifically as advertisements for these wine firms, or just simply acknowledge the popularity of these bubbling beverages.

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