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The Vintage Kitchen & Garden

J. Mrazek Czechoslovakian Pottery Vase Floral, Peasant Art, 1920s, Blue

J. Mrazek Czechoslovakian Pottery Vase Floral, Peasant Art, 1920s, Blue

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This vibrantly lovely Peasant Art Industries floral vase was made in 1920s Czechoslovakia and imported to the United States by Joseph Mrazek. 

The ceramics designed and produced by Joseph Mrazek and his Peasant Art Industries are steeped in the beautiful artistic traditions of the Slovak and Bohemian people.  While Mrazek’s company was in operation only between the World Wars, from 1918 until 1933, the earliest pieces are among the most vibrantly colorful and loveliest, incorporating time-honored adornments such as flowers, hearts, birds, and apples.  After immigrating to New York 1908, Mrazek became a decorated hero of the Czechosolvakian independence movement, serving as an American undercover agent during World War I.  He founded Peasant Art Industries in his New York City apartment after experimenting with a do-it-yourself ceramics kit purchased at Macy’s.  His business grew with the establishment of a factory in Czechoslovakia in the early 1920s from which he imported ceramics hand-painted by local artists in Letovice.  In the mid-1920s, Mrazek expanded his artistic vision to include Art Deco designs that endured until the company closed in 1933.  

Joseph Mrazek’s legacy, the brilliantly-colored, strikingly dramatic hand-painted pottery, is as astonishingly beautiful today as when he first put brush to clay over 100 years ago, a true testament to his artistic vision.


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