Léon Kann (French, active 1896–ca. 1915, active at Sèvres 1896–98 and 1900–1908)
Height: 5 11/16 in. (14.4 cm)
Gift of Diane R. Wolf, 1988
On view at The Met Fifth Avenue in Gallery 556
This coffee service (1988.287.1–.7) embodies the Art Nouveau style in ceramics. The designer chose the fennel plant to literally encase the functional wares, thereby integrating their utilitarian aspects with Art Nouveau's embrace of naturalistic forms. The gray-green enamel of the "fennel" portions was applied to unglazed porcelain, producing a matte texture similar to that of the plant itself, in contrast to the glossy, glazed white areas above.
Marking: Stamped in underglaze black on underside of milk jug: S / 1902 in a triangle (Sèvres factory year mark indicating pâte nouvelle)