Hello. We like to collect well-designed vintage pottery (and lots of other stuff) from the 1950s,
'60s and '70s. Here are some pictures and info of a selection of the things we've found.

Saturday, 5 November 2011

Pisces fish vase Hornsea, 1961.

And last, but not least, in the mini fish series, are two extraordinary vases (or should that be works of art?) known as Pisces.

To me, this is an example of how an item of pottery, in this case a vase, can be elevated, through its design, to a level where it can justly be regarded as a work of art.

In other words, I like these vases.

This is Pisces, designed by Ron Mitchell in 1961 for Hornsea Pottery. Stylised fish are carved into, and sculpted onto, the surface of the vases, and an abstract surface pattern in earthy neutral colours provides the perfect background to the white fish shapes.

As these vases were made in very small numbers, they are now difficult to find. There were three different shapes made. As well as these two, there's a third, taller vase, an example of which is in the V&A Museum, London – you can see that one here: Hornsea Fish Vase at the V&A , and there's another example on the excellent pottery website Retroselect: Pisces at Retroselect

Graphic, sculptural and pleasing to the eye, these vases really are a pleasure to display.


  1. They're amazing, I had no idea that Hornsea made vases like that! Emma

  2. I must admit, they're some of my favourites too. And, as only a few were made, they don't come up very often. Thanks for your comment, Emma.

  3. These are fantastic, not a design I've seen before and like you say, a work of art. Your pictures really show them off well.
    I've read that the small vase (mould no. 723) has also been seen with a blue/grey screen-printed decoration, and with the white stylised fish in relief. Also, the medium size vase (722) has been seen in bright orange on dark green with white fish. Wow, I wonder if they will ever show up!