This is one of five plates in the group from Johnson Brothers (Australia), a division of Johnson Brothers England, one of the largest producers of domestic pottery in the world in their time. Johnsons opened their Australian factory at Croydon, Queensland in 1957; this was run through a firm also known as Sovereign Pottery Ltd. Like the English parent company they produced a wide range of tough utilitarian domestic ware.
This 1970s Australian dinner plate is from a collection of plates designed between the 1950s and 1980s and collected by John Hinds (b1950), an artist based in Melbourne. Initially intended to form part of his multi-media artworks, these plates reflect Hinds' personal taste and interest in 'retro' tableware patterns of 'everyday' production lines popular in mid-century Australia. While the 1950s and 1960s were dominated by British imports from firms such as Broadhurst, Biltons, Wedgwood and Midwinter, it is the dishwasher-friendly Japanese stonewares, often in more dramatic darker colours from firms such as Mikasa, Casual Ceram and Suzukastone that rose to prominence during the 1970s and 1980s. These were supplemented by a limited range of usually more affordable local offerings from Johnson of Australia and from New Zealand's Crown Lynn, Kelston Ceramics and Genuine Ironstone. Hinds would often buy his plates from Melbourne's Camberwell Market but also from second hand shops and garage sales.