Faceted Bowl

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This rather modest ovenproof bowl was produced by Hamilton Potteries, which began operations in 1852. Utilizing various mass-production techniques (slip casting, jiggering, etc.), the company produced its wares in large volumes and by the turn of the century, Hamilton Potteries was the biggest ceramic producer in Canada.

With the rise of electric appliances in Canada, Hamilton Potteries began adapting these same ovenproof materials to produce plugs, insulators and other components for electrical applications. In time, the company moved away from consumer products all together, an evolution reflected through various name changes over the years: in 1946 they became Hamilton Porcelains Ltd., then Hamilton Technical Ceramics and finally Saint-Gobain Advanced Ceramics Hamilton, after a merger with the French conglomerate.

Unlike other Canadian potteries who utilized local clays, Hamilton Potteries imported clay from the northern United States, which apparently produced superior wares. Curiously, despite their reputation for quality this particular example has some very obvious imperfections. Most notably, impressions from some kind of support, probably used during firing, mark the bottom and press right through to the inner surface of the bowl. Today, a piece like this would be a ‘factory reject’, yet this bowl has somehow survived more than sixty years after it was made.

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