Japantastic

The Rottmann-Silver Stencil Venture

In the early 1890s, Arthur Silver created a new technique for stencilling onto wall coverings. This achieved an effect similar to hand stencilling but more cheaply. The stencilled wall coverings could be used instead of wallpaper. The Silver Studio set up in business with Alexander Rottmann, importer of Japanese items. The Studio supplied the designs and Rottmann supplied the materials including grass papers and jute, probably imported from Japan. The stencilling method used was inspired by Japanese katagami stencils. Arthur Silver was applauded by critics for the way he adapted Japanese ideas to British tastes.
sd9230sw673
  • Design for a wallcovering by Arthur Silver (SD9230)

    This is a sketch of symmetrical overlapping peacock feathers designed by Arthur Silver in about 1895. It is a preparatory drawing for a wallcovering (SW6763) that was later produced on grass paper.

  • Grass-paper Wallcovering by Arthur Silver (SW673)

    This wallcovering features a repeating peacock feather design that was created by Arthur Silver in about 1895. Design SD9230 shows Silver’s initial sketch of this pattern.

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