Bay items from the 1950s and early 60s were very popular before W. German pottery itself became popular. Some of the Bodo Mans designs fit into the decorative styles collectors wanted in the late 1980s and into the mid 1990s. The Bodo Mans items were actually more valuable then in that collector group than they are now as W.
German collectibles, which is also partly why the Bodo Mans name still resonates with collectors.
Things to Know About Bay Keramik
1. The 1950s and early 60s items remain the most popular, along with some of the embossed designs. Quality of decoration with the “painted” glazes varies widely, so select carefully and don’t overpay for a sloppy example.
2. Bay kept up when designs began changing in the early 60s, but their overall design quality began falling after that. A large percentage of Bay items are in the lower “tourist” and “kitsch” categories.
3. Despite the abundance of lesser designs and glazes, Bay still produced some excellent items into the 1980s. Reports that they ceased art pottery production in 1972 are inaccurate. They do seem
to have changed emphasis, but there are some late examples that stand as some of the best work Bay produced.
4. Bay only used white/buff clay. I am not aware of a single example in a red/brown clay. Lettering/numbering style varied widely, so not all Bay items have the lower case “y”, but it remains true that if you see the lower case “y” on an item with white clay, Bay is the first company to check…..keeping in mind that Fohr and a few other companies used that combination at times.
5. Don’t assume that every Bodo Mans design will be valuable, and don’t believe every attribution to Mans. He only worked at Bay for a fairly short time.
For more information plus items for sale, check our home page…..not just the usual suspects.
(Photos are of a Bay vase circa 1960. Use of the full West-Germany was used part of the time in the 50s and very early 60s.)