'Il Grattacielo', A Lenci pottery figure by Abele Jacopi, circa 1930, modelled as a young lady with a compact and powder puff, wearing an orange bonnet and bow and polka dot black and white dress, standing on a skyscraper, painted mark, 'Lenci Made in Italy, Torino, 28', 44cm high
Estimate £100 - £150
To be offered for sale Antique and Interiors Sale 2nd October 2019
When the Italian Lenci factory was founded in 1919 by Helen (Elena) Konig Scavini and her husband Enrico Scavini the focus was upon the production of very popular felt dolls and "toys in general, furniture, furnishings and children's layettes". The word Lenci originates from a 1919 trademark which featured a child's spinning top and the words "Ludus Est Nobis Constanter Industria" (LENCI) which translates "To Play is Constant Work".
The Lenci factory attracted talented and highly skilled designers who were drawn to Turin and included Sandro Vacchetti, Abele Jacopi, Gigi Chessa and of course the owner Helen Konig Scavini who was a designer in her own right.
The late 1920's and 1930's Lenci Art Deco figurines are considered among the best designed, most aesthetic Art Deco ceramic figurines of the period. They show mischievous and captivating women which became status symbols to the Italian middle class bourgeoisie of the era.
Lenci suffered during the late 1930's and 1940's from management problems and the destruction of the warehouse during the Second World War. Disney offered a slight reprieve in the 1950's by signing a Disney licence for the production of Dumbo, Bambi, Peter Pan, Pinocchio and Thumper figurines. Mass produced copies of Californian pottery figurines were also made however it was not enough and Lenci closed its doors in 1964.