Here are some now fairly scarce pepper pots designed by the famous designer 'Gerald Benney' for Viners.
Only the 7 pepper pots are included as I found them on their own without the salt pots/shakers unfortunately.
All marked to the base with the Viners mark stating they are designed by 'Gerald Benney'.
ADRIAN GERALD SALLIS BENNEY CBE RDI (1930 - 2008)
Gerald Benney was one of the best goldsmiths of the 20th century.
Born in Hull, Yorkshire, England in 1930 his mother Aileen was a talented silversmith and his Father Ernest was Principal of Brighton College of Art. It was at Brighton College of Art between 1946-1948 he trained as a silversmith under Dunstan Pruden. After two years national service with the Royal Army Service Corps he went to the Royal College of Art under Professor Robert Goodden. In his first year he was awarded a Prince of Wales scholarship.
Benney found his first workshop at Suffolk House Whitfield Place off the Tottenham Court Road in London during his last term at RCA. It was at the RCA that Benney met fellow silversmiths David Mellor and Robert Welch, between them they were to revolutionise post war silver design. Also at this time he met the jeweller John Donald.
Early in his career Benney discovered, by accident, the distinctive surface texturing of silver that was to become his signature. He inadvertently used a hammer with a damaged head while producing a cup and liked the effect. This surface texturing soon became known as "Benney Bark Finish". The finish was widely imitated and dominated contemporary silver design for almost two decades. Its success was, not only, for its new contemporary look but, also, for the practical reasons that it almost eliminated tarnish and fingerprints.
In 1963, Benney moved to Beenham House near Reading. It was here that he decided to develop the use of enamels. Starting in 1968 he revived the almost-lost art of enamelling, he went on to be one of the world's foremost modern enamellers. In 1969, he moved his London studio to Falcon Wharf, Bankside where he ended up employing 22 people.
In 1973 Benney moved his workshop to warehouses in Bear Lane, Southwark. Also in this year Goldsmith's Hall held a major retrospective of his work.
In 1974 he received his first Royal Warrant granted by The Queen. In 1975 by HRH The Duke of Edinburgh and HM Queen Elizabeth The Queen Mother. In 1980 a fourth Royal Warrant was granted from HRH The Prince of Wales. Becoming the first craftsman to hold four Royal Warrants simultaneously,
Between 1957 Â– 69 he was a consultant designer for Viners, designing domestic pieces for production in silver, pewter and stainless steel. Particularly to note his cutlery designs in stainless steel. In 1971 he was given the award Royal Designer for Industry. He was Professor of Silversmithing and Jewellery at the Royal College of Art from 1974 to 1983. His work in silver gained him many patrons
In 1993, together with his son Simon, they opened a shop at 73 Walton Street, Knightsbridge and in 1995 was awarded a CBE.
Benney's work can be seen in many collections worldwide, including those of the Victoria and Albert Museum and Goldsmiths' Company.
In used condition with wear such as scratching and chipping to some of the bark effect plastic bases and they would all benefit from a clean.
Gerald Benney of Viners retro stainless steel cruet pepper pots shakers
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