Suze Boschma-Berkhout Bartje Bartels Small Pottery Figurine
I think this little white pottery figurine of the famous Dutch Boy, Bartje Bartels, is adorable! The statuette is based on the design of both a limestone statue and a bronze statue located in Assen, Drenthe, Netherlands. Both are dedicated to ‘Bartje’ and sculpted by the Dutch sculptress, Suze Boschma-Berkhout in the 1950s.
I’m not sure of the manufacturer of this small figurine, but this piece will have been produced as tourist ware. We believe it probably dates to about the 1960s/70s. He would look great gracing any desk, mantlepiece or shelf!
Height: 19cm (head to base)
He’s in lovely condition, with no chips, cracks or restoration. It does have some manufacturing flaws e.g. flow lines and black specs.
The front of the base is imprinted with ‘Bartje’ and the rear with something I can’t read but the wording ends ‘Berkhout.’
For more vintage souvenirs and collectibles, please click on the following link.
Bartje Bartels, is the hero of a series of children’s books (1930s) written by Dutch author Anne De Vries (1904-1964) who was born near Assen in the Netherlands. The fictional figure, Bartje, and his family resided in Drenthe in the North East of the Netherlands where Bartje is now the provincial symbol of the area.
Bartje was from a poor farming family and, although he looks cute, he was a bit naughty and didn’t want to follow in his father’s footsteps and become a farmer! Sitting down to a frugal meal of brown beans with his family, he says,
“Ik bid niet voor bruine bonen” (“I don’t pray for brown beans”).
He can’t understand why his parents are shocked! I’m not sure whether or not there is a moral to the ‘coming of age’ story but there was a book sequel!