Featured Stein: February 2015

~ Rare Mettlach Renaissance-Red Stein Set by Matthias Hein ~

By Johnsamuel Coleman

We do not know much biographical data on Matthias Hein, with the exception that he worked for Villeroy & Boch between 1885 and 1901 and created these two well known Mettlach steins, numbers 1997 (PUG) George Ehret Brewery and Mettlach no. 2824- Wartburg Krug.

A set of Mettlach Renaissance-red steins designed by Matthias Hein. The steins are #1983 (both quarter- and half-liter) and 1894 (the 3.4-Liter master stein. As shown, the half-liter also was made in brush-gold color.

The here discussed Mettlach number 1983 introduces a Renaissance red color not repeated on any other Mettlach stein. [The author here refers to the historical fact that Renaissance colour-makers greatly extended the available reds, thanks largely to new finds of insect-pigment in the Americas and India.]

You can see the clear lines between the clay inserts to form this pattern. Also note the reversal of color in the pattern. On the 3.4 liter the background color is white while on the and liters the Renaissance red is in the background color. This creates a very striking color contrast.

The handle is also unique in that there are clay insert patterns on it. That means the handle is also etched. All three sizes were signed: M. [atthias] Hein by the handle.

The acorn-‐type finial on the 3.4 liter is rarely found undamaged. You will note on the 3.4 liter stein the acorn in the finial is in full bloom, while in the and liter steins you see the finial as if it is a tip of a growing acorn. This is a renaissance concept of growth in art and art as growth.