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Sugar Bowl and Cover
Accession # 68.87.30a-b
Manufacturer Union Porcelain Works
Designer Karl L. H. Mueller
Title Sugar Bowl and Cover
Date ca. 1876
Medium Porcelain
Dimensions Height: 4 1/2 in. (11.4 cm) Diameter of base: 2 3/4 in. (7 cm)
Marks Painted in red on bottom over glaze: "U.P.W." with "S" below.
Inscriptions no inscriptions
Signed no signature
Credit Line Gift of Franklin Chace
Location American Identities: Expanding Horizons
Description Sugar bowl and cover, part of tête-à-tête tea set (68.87.28-.32), hard paste porcelain. Henna ground with floral design, two white panels with flowers and butterflies, supported by four white rabbit feet, two handles composed of white doves resting on a pitcher plant. The top knob is in the shape of an African-American boy's head. Condition: Good

Curatorial Remarks:

The elegant form of this tea set is derived from eighteenth-century Rococo prototypes, but the amazing variety of flora and fauna that encrust it is typical of the creativity of nineteenth-century eclectic design. The finials on the teapot and sugar bowl, in the form of heads of an Asian male and black sugarcane picker, respectively, will strike many modern viewers as racist imagery, although the nineteenth-century consumer of such porcelain would have considered them benign and, along with the goat\'s head on the handle of the creamer, clever iconographic shorthand that symbolized the contents of each vessel.