A Better Understanding

In continuing my efforts to attribute works created by the New Chelsea Porcelain Company to Palin Thorley, I turned back to the Thorley Papers located in Swem.  This time, the target of my efforts were sketches contained within the papers.  John Austin had told me I may be able to find some valuable information among this portion of the papers, but he was unsure how applicable it would be to my search.

The first group of sketches I examined were contained within several sketchbooks larger than those Thorley typically used for his drawings.  These abnormally large books contained exclusively figure studies, which were unfortunately of no use to my search because he did not utilize hardly any  life-size figure drawing in his New Chelsea works.  However, this find was very interesting nonetheless, as it revealed a side of Thorley that I had not yet seen.  It was obvious that he was a master potter and designer, but this showed that all his artistic abilities were equally honed.

The second group of drawings were slightly more relevant to my purposes, but still not exactly what I was hoping for.  These sketches appeared to be almost exclusively from his days in Williamsburg, which was long after he left New Chelsea.  These images were much more related to design, however, and definitely helped me gain an even better feel for Thorley’s overall style.  If nothing else, these findings will help me better understand Thorley’s larger body of work, which will give me a better feel for the types of designs he preferred.