One of the most technically ambitious pieces that the Connoisseur of Malvern studio produced was the racing study Win, Place and Show. An edition of 10 in 1985, it is shown on the final page of their 1986 catalog and was, of course, designed by Richard Sefton.
Design specifications are 18″ (14.75cm) high, 25.5″ (64.75cm) wide and 13.25″ (33.5cm) deep. The surface texture of the porcelain base mimics a dirt track and the shape of the base itself approximates that of a horseshoe or horse’s hoof (or a “solid hippocrepiform” shape, for the technically minded!) As was typical for the Connoisseur equine studies, this one would have had an accompanying solid wood base although it is not shown in the photo.
Something that is not readily apparent at first glance is the amazing technical expertise that went into the design and construction of this piece. Each of the three horses is delicately balanced on a very small area of contact with the base, and the grouping-together presented a huge challenge in the initial firing process. Every multiple-mold piece of porcelain must have sufficient extraneous clay ‘support pieces’ placed around it so that the firing process results in everything ending up at the correct place despite the inevitable movement and shrinkage. In the case of Win, Place and Show, a full two-thirds more support material was needed for the firing process than was actually contained in the study itself!
A contemporary retail price list from Brielle Galleries included this study at a price of $14,500.
Unfortunately this is the only image I currently have of this study, but I hope to obtain additional views in the future. If anyone does have photos to share, there is a direct-contact form on the About the Connoisseur Archive page.
Images of Connoisseur of Malvern porcelain sculptures herein are provided for informational and educational purposes only, not for reproduction, resale or advertising. All photographs are copyrighted by their owner as indicated via watermark. Photographs with a Connoisseur watermark originally appeared within their copyrighted publications and appear here via the kind permission of Connoisseur of Malvern, Ltd.