WMF Wächtersbach Art Deco Jugendstil Serving Tray

An early 20th century, oval, metal and ceramic waiter or serving tray, pattern 2000 and designed by Christian Neureuther. Second-hand.
Availability: Out of stock.
Stock ID: 606

What's for sale?

This is an oval waiter or serving tray, made between 1910 to 1930 by the German companies WMF and Wächtersbach Ceramics.

The small, pretty, central design in blue and green adds colour and interest to an otherwise straightforward grey pattern on white. The pattern is referenced by the "Dec. 2000" on the underneath and described in their 1929 trade catalogue as "Art grey on white ground".

The ceramic base is surrounded by a metal gallery border with narrow vertical slits. The metal parts of the tray are completed by four small ball feet and two handles. The metal is nickel-plated brass.

This range is an example of how styles evolved between Art Nouveau and Art Deco and the small squares are reminiscent of work by modernists Joseph Maria Olbrich (1867-1908) and Charles Rennie Mackintosh (1868 - 1928). Jugendstil developed in Germany after an 1887 publication of the Munich magazine "Jugend", promoting their local version of Art Nouveau.

The form is probably a design by ceramist Christian Neureuther (1869-1921), who founded what became the Wächtersbach art department. The pattern particularly shows the influence of Olbrich, an Austrian architect who produced a number of similar designs for interiors, homeware, book bindings, etc.

Who made it and when?

It was made by WMF and Wächtersbach Ceramics in Germany, during 1910 to 1930 The maker's mark on the base reads:

  • WMF.
  • Dec 2000 (the pattern number)
  • 18 (probably the form or shape number)

What condition is it in?

  • Second-hand
  • In fair condition
  • No chips or damaged metalwork
  • The ceramic tray has some crazing and marks, which show its age
  • The base has a hairline crack in the surface which hasn't passed through to the other side
  • The metal is tarnished in several places

What are the measurements?

  • 59.5cm length (23 inches)
  • 31cm width (12.25 inches)
  • 4cm high (1.5 inches)
  • 1749 grams

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Item Attributes
Attribute nameAttribute value
MakerWMF Wächtersbach
PeriodEarly 20th century (1900-1949)