American China Painting Tile of an Angel or Cherub in a Bed of Roses
A sweet little china painting from the early 1900's of a curly haired angel or cherub lying in a garden of roses, a pair of songbirds perched on a nearby branch. Made on a blank from and marked the "W. H. Jackson Co. Pat. Dovetail. Patented August 19 1902" it measures 3" tall and 6" wide. Signed by the artist, V. Fowler, on the lower right. The Jackson Company was founded in 1827 in Long Island City, New York. The tile is an adorable image painted and fired by an accomplished amateur and remains in excellent condition.
From the Met: During the late 1870s, a china-decorating fervor swept the United States that persisted into the early twentieth century. Thousands of women employed paintbrushes and china paints and decorated ceramic objects for their homes, as gifts, and for sale. Their intense interest in china painting inspired Edward Strahan of the Tile Club, whose members included artists Winslow Homer and William Merritt Chase to humorously state that this “decorative mania” had caused “the loveliest and purest maidens in the land to smell of turpentine.”
China painting was socially acceptable because it allowed women to create artistic objects for the home. In addition, prior to the 1870s, respectable employment opportunities for working-class women were limited to domestic service and factory or shop work. Art schools offered training in china decorating and pottery painting to prepare women for careers as artisans or designers.