David Rago on Multi-Color Grueby and the Present Lot

Multi-color Grueby has always been rare in any manifestation. It was more difficult, time-consuming, and expensive to produce and was therefore made in much smaller numbers. When dealing with “painted” matte glazes such as this example, where the flowers are a different color from the background, we most often see color runs caused by the heat of the kiln. The paler colors, by their very nature, were far more visible when this occurred. Perfectly fired vases such as this one are the rarest of the rare, and this is an extraordinary piece both in design and execution. The modeling, in particular, is crisp and deep, rendering the design in further clarity.

Many competent critics regard {Grueby} ware as the highest achievement of the potter's art in this country. It has a distinct individuality in character and tone...relying for its effect...on the super finish of its surface, on the subdued richness of its colors, and on the ideas embodied in its designs.

Walter Gray, "Latter-Day Developments in American Pottery," Brush and Pencil, January 1902