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GUSTAVSBERG

Gustavsberg’s history began in February 1825, when a porcelain factory was set up in the property Farsta in Gustavsberg, Sweden. It had its first heyday in the early 20th century during the Art Noveau/Jugend period with designers such as Gunnar Wennberg and Josef Ekberg. But the really good years were the twenty years that followed the Second World War. Willhelm Kåge, Berndt Friberg, Hertha Bengtsson, Lisa Larson and Anders Bruno Liljefors all contributed to make Gustavsberg’s world renowned pottery, but of course Stig Lindberg was the prime star. Gustavsberg is still in production, but now primarily focusing on dinnerware and not unexpected Stig Lindberg is still one of their best selling artists.

Read more about Wilhelm Kåge , Stig Lindberg , Berndt Friberg and Sven Wejsfelt .

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A slow start

Gustavsberg’s history began in February 1825, when a porcelain factory was set up in the property Farsta in Gustavsberg, Sweden. The first trials in 1827 failed and the company decided to diversify their offering with candle manufacturing. A turn came in 1839, when the company replaced German clays for English materials and methods. The change made them change their logotype into the anchor, after an English model.

Wilhelm Odelbergs started to hire artists to the factory, foremost among these were Gunnar G: son Wennerberg and Herman Neujd. In 1917, Wilhelm Kåge became the artistic director In 1937 Gustavsberg was sold to the Swedish Cooperative Association

Gustavsberg Studio, an aesthetic laboratory

In 1942 Wilhelm Kage reorganized his department into the Gustavsberg Studio (G Studio). It was launched as an "aesthetic laboratory" within the factory’s borders. The studio was depicted as an idyllic oasis of ideas besides the industrial stress, a place where work could be done in peace and quiet.

The studio debuted in 1942 with the exhibition "faience painted in spring" where Wilhelm Kåge and Stig Lindberg in cooperation with Berndt Friberg took up the ancient and vibrant art of faience. The exhibition, which was displayed in the factory's own premises in the center of Stockholm, attracted wide attention.

The studio evolved rapidly after the war and the number of employees grew. At most, a total of about 50 people were involved in the business. The number of designers and artists employees amounted to about 15 to 20 including Wilhelm Kåge, Stig Lindberg Berndt Friberg, Anders Bruno Liljefors, Bengt Berglund and Sven Wejsfelt

The studio was closed in connection with the closing of household porcelain factory in 1993.

Stig Lindberg was Gustavsberg’s most profitable designer

Stig Lindberg is Gustavsberg’s most renowned designer and without him, the factory would probably not survive during the economic crisis in the 1940s. In 1948, Stig Lindberg succeeded Wilhelm Kage as the artistic director. He had this role between 1948-1957 and 1971-1980. His most famous work includes faience series as Domino, Figurine and Carnival, dinnerware as Berså, Spisa Ribb, Terma, Adam, Coq and Birka and his unique, beautiful and quirky art stoneware. He was also responsible for recruiting Lisa Larson to the factory.

Gustavsberg today

Today, Gustavsberg AB manufactures sanitary ware such as toilets, sinks and faucets and is a subsidiary of the German company Villeroy & Boch. The HushållsPorslinsFabriken (Household Porcelain Factory) which has been in continuous operation since 1825. In 1996 some of the employees became owners. The factory, which is the only porcelain factory in Sweden uses the well-known anchor tag, production year and "Made by Gustavsberg Sweden" as their mark.

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