Heritage Hills – Decatur "Estate Sale"
Before I critique the sale of one woman’s seeming obsession with small ceramics I should take inventory of what ceramics are in my own home. I am not a young man but while my lifestyle may be considered youthful by some, but the calendar of my existence says that I should have far more ceramic figurines in my home. What do I have? Taking inventory by walking from room to room I see first a small retro gift vase with a dancing teenage girl on it, a brightly painted six inch Infant of Prague, 10 eight inch saints including Lucia and both Teresas, three Hummel figures and a one-foot tall hula dancer. In actuality the saints and the hula dancer are panted plaster so they are technically not ceramics. The fertility-inducing infant of Prague dates to my parent’s home (it was never effective here). The Hummel my father acquired on the black market in postwar Germany by trading a pound coffee or a carton of cigarettes for them. The dancing girl, which I now use as a penholder, was something I picked up while in my 20’s when I bought far too much stuff at thrift stores.
So every ceramic tells a story. When I come across a sale like this one just outside Decatur I wondered what the stories are and this lady had plenty. When grown children take stock of a parents home they marvel at and fear the quantity of the runaway nick knacks, as many younger people believe having too many of this stuff is an indication that one is getting way up there in years.
So what did I find? Well the quantity trumped the quality. Aside from one big faded clown head with a sign indicating it was a McCoy, with fading paint there were no Llardo or other overpriced designer named items. A large seated Raggedy Ann or Raggedy Ann knockoff was one of the bigger works. On the floor I encountered a life like dachshund that could have been used as a decoy to attract long little dogs. Two very ugly and disturbing cats were on a table nearly covered in ceramics one with an insidious smile the other with a bow tie was equally disturbing. See the photos for the full effect. Other artifacts there included a trio of squirrels, a head with blank eyes and a set of mugs shaped like elephants. There was a wide range of styles from your traditional Blue Boy and Pinky to a pair of intertwined heads reminiscent of Modigliani. In one room was a bin of assorted tiny ceramics cats and dogs There were also two bags of broken ceramic figures that tempted me to become a ceramic assemblage artist.
There were other objects of note in the house a jig saw puzzle of a squirrel shaped like a squirrel, a copy of Walking Tall Part 2, five feathered pens in holders (you can never have too many of those) and a large painting of a woman lying in bed in a unintended erotic pose.
I bought nothing.
One of many feline figures found in Heritage Hills.
Human head with empty eyes.
Bin of small cats.
Ceramic rendering of Rag Doll.
Trio of squirrels.
Squirrel shaped puzzle.
A lifetime supply of feathery pens.
Reclining figure under the sheets.