Bode Willumsen

Bode WIllumsen was the son of the painter and ceramist J.F. Willumsen, became a blacksmith's apprentice and was then trained as a draftsman at Bing & Grøndahl and the Royal Porcelain Factory in Denmark.

Bode Willumsen's field of activity was ceramics and the earliest stoneware works at the Royal Porcelain Factory show a pictorial imagination, where he placed reliefs and small human and animal figures on layers, handles, etc.

In the 1930s he set up his own workshop and oversaw production in all its phases, from the construction of the kilns to the sale. Willumsen's works were characterized by a stubborn primitivism with stone-like surface effects in lobed glazes. Axel Salto worked here for a time and benefited greatly from his manual and chemical expertise. During the occupation it became difficult to obtain coal and he had to close down the workshop and again seek employment at the Royal Porcelain Factory. Here he created important new stoneware works and a series of elegant, slightly satirical blanc de chine figures such as the Blacksmith, the Painter and the Potter's Wife, which became very popular with the public.

He marked his 50th birthday with a 1.50 m high blanc de chine jar, whose reliefs describe the development from the origin of life through the Stone Age, the Middle Ages, etc. up to the layer depicting Niels Bohr's atomic theory. After leaving the factory, Willumsen devoted himself to work with enamel on copper.