This Flying Swans vase was painted by one of the most gifted artists at Royal Worcester in the 19th and early 20th century – Charles Henry Clifford Baldwyn. Baldwyn began working at the factory in 1880 at the age of fifteen and left in 1904. He had a passion for local bird life, spending hours in the countryside sketching birds and buying captured birds to study. At the factory he specialised in bird painting, particularly swans but other varieties also – pigeons, owls and tropical species. He also painted watercolours and exhibited at the Royal Academy.
During his time at Royal Worcester Baldwyn’s paintings of swans in flight on vases became his signature pieces. These designs were so distinctive and synonymous with his name that no other decorator was allowed to paint them during his employment at the Royal Worcester factory. Baldwyn was also allowed to sign his designs at a time when few factory artists were permitted to do so.
Royal Worcester went to the trouble of registering this and other designs by Baldwyn to discourage copying by other rival factories because the style was so desirable and important for their sales. Later versions of the Baldwyn swans registered pattern could be printed in outline and then coloured in by other factory painters.
Artist: Charles Baldwyn
Material: Glazed Parian
Factory: Royal Worcester
From the Archive
Showstopper sponsor: Philip Serrell Auctioneers and Valuers
Philip Serrell Auctioneers and Valuers is a company with origins dating back to the 18th Century that specialises in the sale of Worcester porcelain. Philip’s interest in Worcester was inspired by a visit to the Museum and a chat with Henry Sandon as a 13 year old schoolboy.