A Four-Piece Silver Coffee Service, circa 1930
Marks: each stamped Emmy Roth in script and 800
10 inches (25.4 cm) high, coffee pot
15-3/4 x 11-1/2 inches (40.0 x 29.2 cm) tray
Comprising a coffee pot, creamer, sugar bowl, and tray
M.R. J. Brinkgreve et al, Europäisches Kunstgewerbe 1927, Leipzig, 1928, pl. 100, for a related sugar bowl;
Silver of a New Era, exh. cat., Museum Boymans van-Beuningen, Rotterdam, 1992, pp. 170 and 171, for a related mocha service and tray.
Emmy Roth has long been an elusive figure of the 20th century design period. She was born in Hattigen, Germany May 12, 1885. Her career as a silversmith took shape in the apprentice and werkbund traditions of Germany and by 1916 she established her own workshop in Berlin-Charlottenburg. She enjoyed a steady patronage until the rise of the National Socialists in 1933. As a Jewish artist she was forced to flee and worked for a period in France and the Netherlands before settling permanently in Tel Aviv in 1939.
The present lot dates to her most active period and is indicative of her modernist point of view. The essential forms are historicist in nature but she has liberated them from the decorative trappings of earlier periods. They are free of gadrooning and unnecessary engraved patterns that distract from the overall function and purity of the form itself. Roth explained her design aesthetic in a 1925 interview "we shall probably approach the spirit of our age more closely if we create well-poised and beautiful utilitarian designs which convey a picture of our time, and its demand for deliberate tautness and simplicity, as an inheritance to later generations."
Estimate: $8,000 - $12,000.
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