Susie Cooper brings sophistication to Staffordshire pottery. Well known for her bold hand painted designs and geometric patterns Susie remains highly collectible, with her Art Deco pieces by far the most popular. From charming breakfast sets, complete with eggcups, toast racks, cups and saucers, to breathtaking designed earthenware vases, Susie Cooper is both stylish and practical.
Susie was born in 1902 to a wealthy, affluent family. She was exposed to modern art from a young age and studied at the Burslem School of Art from 1919-1922. Susie Cooper found influences in Cubism, European decorative arts, French Art Deco, and Modernism.
In 1922 Susie left Burslam School of Art to become a decorator at the A.E.Gray + Co pottery where she worked under a mentor, Gordon Forsythe. It was obvious then that Susie had an extraordinary talent.
The Susie Cooper Pottery opened in 1929, but was quickly closed by creditors three weeks later. In March 1930 Susie opened a small workshop in Burslem, painting earthenware and never looked back. Susie travelled British Industrial fairs and was extremely good at commercial promotion. Her “No Home is Complete Without Susie Cooper” slogan, and a lot of hard work made Susie a big name in the Art Deco world.
In the 1930s the Cooper pottery designed an array of shapes decorated with florals, geometric patterns, and modernist designs. Designs include Triangles, Leaping Deer, Krayon decoration, Kestrel shape, and the most famous pattern – Dresden Spray. The Second World War however caused a halt in production after fire wiped out Susie’s store of lithographs. After the war, owing to lack of materials, the Susie Cooper pottery went back to pre-war decorating techniques.
In the 1950s Wedgwood joined with Susie and continued to produce Susie Cooper, with a lot of her work now made in bone china. The most famous designs from the 50s include Quail Shape and the Lion and Unicorn, however it is the early hand painted, Art Deco and Lusterwares that remain the best investments.