Painted Lustre: The Cumbow China Decorating Company

May 26, 2006 - October 08, 2006

Price-Strongwell Cultural Heritage Galleries

Exhibit Details

Artists of Cumbow China Decorating Company of Abingdon transformed blank stoneware to lustrous pieces decorated with gold, silver or copper paint. Under the direction of Mabel Cumbow Ruskin, the company developed from a room above the owners’ kitchen in the 1930s to a travel destination on Main Street in the 1940s. The designs, inspired by historical china patterns and the surrounding region, varied from a version of the familiar Tea Leaf pattern to an original pattern using geometric shapes and Egyptian hieroglyphics called “Abingdon.”


Wise, VA; Marvin Tadlock, Bristol, VA; and Mary Tartaro, Blacksburg, VA.