Locations: Los Angeles
Dates of Operation: 1940s - 1958
Seller Values: Check average price on Ebay
I’ve seen a considerable amount of Yona Ceramics pieces in my thrift store and estate sale travels. But I haven’t really picked up any of them yet, simple because they’re just not my cup of tea. A majority of the pieces are goldleaf glazed “asian-inspired” figurines which were popular at the time - but I think they just look plain garish.
I’ve seen some differing opinions as to when Yona was first started up - as early as 1935 and late as 1946. think it’s pretty safe to say that’s the time range where they first began. Yona Lippin was actually a former Hedi Schoop decorator. Like the employees of many of the early California potteries, she later decided to start her own business since it was so lucrative back in the day. Indeed, many people say her work owes a huge debt to her time with working with Schoop’s enterprise.
Yona started the company with her husband Max and produced various giftware, figurines and dinnerware up until around 1968. As said before, many of the items employ a huge amount of metallic glaze in gold, copper and silver gilding. Many of her items are also handpainted, and some of the earlier ones featured lace or flower detail decorations that were applied by hand later on.
The pottery was located on San Fernando Road, north of Dodger Stadium. I’ve found the exact address - it now seems to be occupied by a “Tyner Paving Co.” Maybe I’ll take a drive down there and see if they have any information about Yona.
There is a large popular line of Yona’s from the 1950s that was largely inspired by The King and I, featuring Siamese figures. A large portion of these items were actually designed by The Claysmiths’ Will Climes, but decorated by Yona and her workers. Lane and Co. and Maddux of California also produced some similar items.
I did pick up the above Yona covered dish from an estate sale, just in order to get an example for the gallery and for the backstamp. A note on the stamps - the one I have looks like it was handpainted or drawn on in gold paint by a worker. Many of the other pieces I’ve seen have a similar mark - most seem to say only “Yona”. However, I’ve seen a larger low console bowl that have a gold stamping that said “Yona Ceramics” that is not handpainted. Also, some pieces do not have any marks at all - especially those that were part of a larger set.Note: We've tried to provide as much info as possible on this pottery maker or artist. For further info, you may want to research the items they have on Ebay listed under this name. We've tried to hand tailor the searches below so they will bring up the most accurate results. If there are no results, it will list general California pottery.