Rookwood, Ceramic Vases, and Lighting Spring Forward at Treadway Auction

by Kate Nixon



Spring colors were on display during Treadway Gallery’s mid-May Spring Decorative Arts Auction, featuring ceramics, metalwork, fine art, and lighting in both antique and modern styles. While a big pull to their auction were the bright colorful floral pottery of Rookwood, Rosewood, Weller and a few other examples, Arts & Crafts lighting brought some flower power with stunning examples of floral-inspired shades of art glass. Serving examples of both American and European artisanship, the May 16th auction was poised to continue the interest in the nature-inspired style during a time of blooming of both nature and human activity.

Ceramics: Rookwood was a belle of the ball and a clear choice of bidders as the first lot of the auction, a beautiful Iris vase, sold for more than $63,000. A number of Rookwood vases by artists Carl Schmidt, Elizabeth Barrett, Katherine Jones, Matt Daly, Harriet Wilcox, Elizabeth Lincoln, Laura Fry and others also sold particularly well. The sole Newcomb College vase listed sold well, fetching a $9,100 realized price. Meanwhile, the colorful and springtime representative Roseville Pottery works nearly all sold either within or past their high estimates, proving the need for bright and happy vases is alive in the collecting world. Even Weller Pottery had some hits in this auction: a surprise coming in the form of two green Weller Pottery vases selling past the high estimate of $350 at a realized price of $3,250!

Lighting: Traditionally a popular auction item, the beautiful glass shades don’t fail to disappoint and in the case of both American and European offerings, both had their winners. A unique Wisteria lamp sold for $11,250, Tiffany Studios lighting sold well, including a lamp base in good condition for $7,800, while European favorites Daum and Loetz lamps sold for more – and in the case of Daum, one example sold for a realized price of $15,600.

Metalwork: A Heintz bronze and silver frame in ver good condition sold for $1,250 while a pair of signed Jarvie brass Candlesticks sold for $2,250. The fascination with copper and enamel boxes continued with a Gertrude Twichell representative that was “exceptional and unsual” selling for $17,500.


The Highlights

  • Rookwood vase by Carl Schmidt – an uncrazed, clean and signed vase with a beautiful iris design in original condition from Rookwood artist Carl Schmitt sold for a realized price of $63,750.00. A number of Carl Schmitt vases have sold well in the last decade, but this vase appears to have broken a record for Schmitt’s work.
  • A signed bronze Tiffany Studios lamp base in “excellent condition” sold for $7,800, sailing past the $4,500 high estimate.
  • A signed copper and enamel box made by Boston artisan Gertrude Twichell sold for the impressive five figured price of $17,500, an $8,000 price difference over the high estimate of $9,500.
  • Two signed Weller Pottery vases in very good original condition sailed past the $350.00 high estimate to sell for $3,250. The two vases came from a New York Collection and according to, similarly green glazed Weller Pottery have traditionally sold in modest three figure prices.


Here’s how our choices fared. All final prices listed are realized prices.



Lot 20: Rookwood Pottery vase

by Harriet E. Wilcox

from a Cincinnati collection
glazed ceramic
signed, numbered, dated 1926
Measures 10″h x 2.75″dia

Estimate: $900 – $1,200

Realized price: $2,340



Lot 66: Rookwood Pottery designed by Kataro Shirayamadani

from a Cincinnati collection
glazed ceramic
signed, numbered, dated 1914
Measures 11″h x 6.25″dia

Estimate: $350 – $450

Realized price: $938




Lot 67: Rookwood pottery vase

by Sallie Toohey

from a Cincinnati collection
matte glazed and carved ceramic
signed, numbered, dated 1904
Measures 10″h x 5.25″dia

Estimate: $400 – $600

Realized price: $845




Lot 200: Gertrude Twichell box

from a New York collection
copper, enamel and wood
Measures 4″h x 5″w

Estimate: $7,500 – $9,500

Realized price: $17,500




Lot 314: Roseville Pottery Wisteria vase

from a Fairfield, OH collection
glazed ceramic
paper label
Measures 7″h x 8.5″dia

Estimate: $200 – $300

Realized price: $975



All images and lot descriptions courtesy of Treadway Gallery. To see how other lots sold, please visit