The last potters: Chevalier, Brugère and the Coustillas

The access of the valley to foreign trade with the navigation of l’Isle in 1837, then the arrival of the train in 1857, opened up the countryside to industrial pottery and tinsmithing. Although the potters tried to adapt their production by copying the shapes and colours of imported pottery, pottery production and the number of potters rapidly declined.

Some potters were still producing flower pots for horticulture or resin pots for gemmage in 1920. In the Double, potter Brugère turned art pottery into small decorative bluish vases. In Beauronne, Jean Chevalier Lavaure turned potteries decorated with naturalistic or allegorical sconces until 1942. In the 1920s, Alfred Coustillas, then his sons Gilbert and Abel, still produced utilitarian pottery in Douzillac. In 1945, they converted to the production of tiles and terracotta tiles for historical monuments.

Illustrations :

– Postcard of the potter M. Brugère and his production of art pottery from the Périgord to Saint-Barthélémy de Bellegarde in the Double in the 1920s. (Collection Brives)

– Photograph of Jean Chevalier Lavaure’s family posing with their pottery in front of their house-studio in Faye in Beauronne in the 1930s. (Collection Mari.José. Villesuzanne)

– Photographs by Gilbert and Abel Coustillas of the hamlet of Faye in Beauronne on an electric lathe in the 1960s and 1970s. (Private collection)