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Troika

Troika pottery from St Ives is defined by its sharp, angular forms. The factory was founded in the early 1960s by Leslie Illsley, Benny Sirota and Jan Thompson and took its name ‘Troika’ from the Russian word for a sleigh drawn by three horses.

The distinctive ceramic wares were often produced using unconventional methods using slurry from the local tin mines, household emulsion paint and melted broken glass.

In 1968, Troika started being sold from the shelves of Heals and Liberty in London but, in the mid 1970s, the factory began to face economic difficulties and was eventually wound up in December 1983.


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ATG letter: Fruitful questions on whereabouts of rare Troika

23 April 2018

MADAM – My collection of Troika ceramics includes some rare pieces, notably two bowls of fruit.

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Troika: today’s in-demand pottery

25 February 2013

The 50th anniversary of the founding of the Troika Pottery in St Ives has inspired a new book and exhibition which has shone the spotlight on this collecting field.

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Troika pottery in Somerset

27 June 2012

A collection of Cornish Troika pottery will go under the hammer at Lawrences of Crewkerne, Somerset at their three-day, mixed-discipline sale on July 3, 5 and 6.

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New Troika fakes emerge on eBay

26 January 2009

Readers are being urged to be aware of a new batch of counterfeit Troika wares that are being offered for sale on eBay.

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Chance to break the mould

25 October 2005

When the Troika pottery in Newlyn closed its doors in 1983 its moulds were secured for posterity, not in a local museum or the collection of a Troika devotee but in a garden shed in Northumberland.

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Troika adds gloss to Stonepark sale

11 December 2004

Troika is known for two distinctly different styles – the rough textured wares of which the Cycladic masks are now the most celebrated and the scarcer Brancusi-style smooth monochromatic glazed wares that reveal a rather different aesthetic.

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Specialists rule Qianlong vase is ‘right’ and bid £5000

20 October 2004

A COUPLE of exotic sleepers swelled the tally at Lays Auctions (15% buyer's premium) September 23-24 sale which also boasted healthy prices for more home-grown fare such as Troika and Newlyn copper.

August still the selling season by the sea

16 September 2004

SOME provincial auctioneers and London’s major houses batten down their hatches during the traditionally dead month of August, but for Scarborough Perry (15% buyer's premium) it was business as usual for their August 12-13 sale.

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Troika ware spreads its appeal to Cumbria

08 September 2004

GOOD standard furniture sold well enough at Mitchell's (15% buyer's premium) July 15-16 sale and included a locally made Jacobean piece.

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‘Troika Man’ brings fine morning…but then things change

29 June 2004

“A WONDERFUL morning and a dreadful afternoon,” was how auctioneer Elizabeth Pepper-Darling summed up Morphets' (15/10% buyer's premium) 640-lot June 10 sale which was in some ways a microcosm of the auction scene in general.

New young collectors vie with keen Cornish for Troika

15 June 2004

AUCTIONEERS David Lay (15% buyer's premium) of Penzance can rely on strong local demand for home-grown collectables such as Newlyn copper and Troika pottery at the bi-monthly sales.

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Record books struggle to keep pace with Troika price rises

10 April 2004

NOT all the market resides in a state of stagnation.

Meanwhile, more traditional values also grow

06 April 2004

WHILE Troika ceramics made up the first 150 lots at Burstow & Hewett’s (10% buyer's premium) March 17 sale, there was also more traditional fare on offer, such as this 9in (22cm) diameter pair of mid-18th century English (probably London) delft plates, right, each with a painted design of a cockerel and a flower in blue, green and orange.

Troika revival complements oak sale

23 March 2004

HELPED by both the input of new collectors and the appearance on the market of some good pieces, Troika pottery certainly experienced renewed interest in 2003.