Tuesday, 9 August 2011

R is for Rathbone

To continue my alphabet of British Arts and Crafts metalware - R is for Richard Llewellyn Benson Rathbone (1864 - 1939) who was a designer of metalwork, silver and jewellery often on the arts and crafts style.

He was born in Lancashire, son of Richard Rathbone, a Liverpool merchant. He is recorded as training with William Arthur Smith Benson in London, who was a relative. He established his own studio in Liverpool in the 1890's working until c1902/3 where he made metalware designs by CFA Voysey. These designs he sold to Faulkner Bronze in 1902. He also worked on project with H Mackmurdo and Heyward Sumner. During this period he taught metalworking at the University of Liverpool.

In c1903 he moved to London where he was appointed head of the Sir John Cass Institute in London and taught at the London Central School of Arts and Crafts. Later he was the Chairman of the London County Council Consultative Committee on Silversmithing.

The few items I have encountered have either been simple repousse decorated bronze or copper boxes and vessels. Some decorated with twisted wire. The silver items are more elborate and perhaps date from later in his career. Marked with "Rathbone" a pattern/order number and sometimes a date.

Internet references

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