This is a great 1920s table made with Spanish cuenca tiles. Tile-making was introduced to Spain by Moors some time in the 14th century and the tiles in this manner have been made throughout the centuries. Cuenca tiles were used extensively in the 16th century. A factory in Seville called Fábrica de Manuel Ramos Rejano made tiles that look similar between 1895 and 1965. Another one, Mensaque Rodriguez Y Cia, was founded in Seville in mid-19th century and is still in business, producing tiles with geometric motifs that continue the Arabic cultural heritage.
The complex Moorish design is made up of four large rectangular tiles and is very beautiful. It's showing pomegranates, leaves, some berries, and general floral elements. The bright glazes really stand out on white background. Six long narrow border tiles surround the center design with a vine and four small corner tiles complete the table. The corners are particularly interesting. The tiles are made using a very different technique and they picture a deer, a bird, a sail boat, and a castle. If there's any symbolism to it, I don't know what it is.
The wrought iron frame looks like it was made in 1920s; I am guessing the tiles are the same age. The tiles are very well-preserved with no cracks or major chips, but the iron frame is missing a decorative piece on one side.
- Dimensions: 27 1/2" x 16 3/4", four 10 3/4" x 5 3/8" tiles, six 10 3/4" x 2 5/8" border tiles, four 2 3/4" x 2 3/4" corner tiles
- Acquired: Orleans, Massachusetts, July 2013