~ The Clown Duo ~
by David Harr
I have wanted to design and produce a contemporary character stein for some time. I wanted something which was in keeping with the traditions of character steins, but with a contemporary appeal. I looked at old steins and new, and was finally inspired to produce the pair of clowns you see here.
The brightly costumed clown at the right is Giuseppe. He is obviously a happy fellow, enjoying playing with his dog, Lucilla. But we know that clowns are the masters of external appearance, always happy on the outside regardless of their inner feelings. His companion, Guido, on the left, has removed his mask to reveal a sorrowful look. Do you see why?? Lucilla! Sheís missing! With no one to play with, Guido is ready to cry. Donít these steins remind you of your younger days, when an affectionate puppy, not an expensive Mettlach or Schierholz stein, was all it took to make you happy?
Once I decided on a pair of clowns, I looked at all the artwork I could find to get ideas for how they should appear. Nora Wildgren, an artist who works with Henry Cornell Importers, drew numerous variations. Once I settled on the design, Tino Schunke, a freelance modeler in Germany, developed the molds and several prototypes, which he then decorated. The colorful polka-dot costume was an obvious choice, the blue and white version came later. I continued to work with the artist and the modeler until I got the look I wanted. At this point the molds were turned over to Albert Stahl for production.
The details: The concept of these porcelain character steins is mine. They are produced in a numbered limited edition in Germany by Albert Stahl, and imported by Henry Cornell. Production will be limited to 300 sets, of which only 150 sets have been produced to date.
The steins will be available on my web site, www.charactersteins.com, for $500 for the set, and $250 for one (either full color or blue and white). For SCI members I am offering a 20% discount. If these donít make you happy, you will have to get a puppy!