The two beautiful wall cupboards of the Parisian collector Alain Demoly contained, in addition to an exquisite selection of clay pipes, a number of wonderful curiosities. That was the result of his broad interest in ceramic figural pipes. A pipe that always caught my attention was at the top of the left cupboard. It is a colourful portrait of a man with a striking lock of hair and a small mustache, doubtlessly the portrait of Adolf Hitler. The pipe was shaped in porcelain by a Parisian ceramist in 1974. Fully designed by hand and finished in natural colours, this is a creditable product. Unfortunately, we don’t know the intention of the maker, but the fact that the unlucky number "13" was pressed on the neckline indicates a negative connotation rather than adoration. Whatever the case, it remains a loaded subject, but this figure cannot be missed in a gallery of celebrities on the pipe. As Demoly stated, Stalin's portrait also had to be found for his collection. When his property went up for auction in Paris in 2016, this particular pipe was missing. The family found it inappropriate to go public with the sale of the Hitler pipe, especially at the time when terrorist attacks captivated the Parisians. So, the pipe remained off the auction. It was privately sold to our museum on special request, although it will remain in our storage for the time being.
Amsterdam Pipe Museum APM 22.558Permalink