Date Made/Found: 1970-1979
, 1907 - 1982
Material and Medium: stainless steel and metal
Dimensions: Overall: 80 x 75 x 75mm (3 1/8 x 2 15/16 x 2 15/16in.)
Department: Decorative Art
Accession Number: 2012.24
This is a vase, or 'violet bowl' created by the celebrated Australian-born designer and silversmith Stuart Devlin. In the early 1970s Devlin was commissioned by the Sheffield manufacturing firm Viners to create a new range of stainless steel tableware. Other objects in this range included wine and champagne goblets, tumblers and candleholders.
Stuart Devlin’s early 70s pieces are more ornate than the austere modernist lines of 1960s stainless steel tableware designs such as those by Robert Welch and David Mellor. Here he combines the shiny lustre of stainless steel with the dramatic contrast of a textured gold finish. It has been suggested that the spherical shape of this bowl with its irregular crater-like holes reflects the cultural impact of the 1969 moon landing. The range ceased to be manufactured in 1979.
Contemporary design became an important feature of stainless steel tableware in the 1950s and 1960s. Notable designers of the period such as David Mellor, Robert Welch, Gerald Benney and Stuart Devlin were commissioned by cutlery and tableware manufacturers to create new and exciting ranges of objects to cater for public demand.