Four (4) lovely handpainted Arabia of Finland plates made by Kurt Ekholm’s ARA division. ARA was begun in the 1930s as an ornamental decoration line meant for budget conscious consumers. Its design was spearheaded by Kurt Ekholm, who was artistic director for the company from 1932-1948. While he did personally design some of the ARA line, it’s unclear (at least to us) which items were made by him since they don’t appear to have any identifying marks beyond the factory stamp. Most people just assume so, but since there were a lot of designers working in that division, we can’t say for sure they’re actually done BY him.
The entire ARA ceramics line is rather difficult to come across. Most of the ones we’ve seen are “redware” covered with a thin white glaze. They were originally meant to be low-cost ornamental objects – but this is the first time we’ve come across dinnerware. We think these are salad plates, but aren’t sure.
Plates are in very good vintage shape. As with most older Arabia we’ve seen, they exhibit normal manufacturing glaze bubbles and variations to the glaze. No major cracks or chips – one plate has a tiny 1/16″ flake off the rim, and another has a slightly deeper 1/8″ chip off the rim (see photos).
Marked on the bottom under glaze with “Arabia Made in Finland” and the ARA mark in oval.
Each plate measures about 8 inches wide in diameter.
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