Stuart Devlin was born in Australia in 1931 and trained at the Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology from 1957. While there he was awarded a scholarship to study in the School of Silversmithing and Jewellery at the Royal College of Art, London, working under the influential Professor Robert Goodden (1909-2002).
Following a spell back in Melbourne, Devlin returned to London in 1965 and set up a workshop where he began producing items in his distinctive style, for which he would eventually gain an international reputation. Among his early commissions was a silver sculpture for the Ford motor company of Britain to celebrate the release of new models in 1966. His work also caught the eye of Royalty, with the granting of a Royal Warrant in 1982. He was also patronised by the British aristocracy such as the Duke of Westminster (see Christie's London, 12 June 2007, lot 1).
The present coffee-jug and hot-milk jug were designed by Devlin, and in all probability made by him as well, while he was still studying at the Royal College of Art in London. Other examples of this design include a four-piece coffee set from the Collection of the Worshipful Company of Goldsmiths' (see R. Ransome Wallis, Treasures of the 20th Century, London, 2000, p. 75, no. 184) and another coffee-jug and hot-milk jug from the collection of the Marquess of Lothian (see Sotheby's Olympia, 29 May 2003, lot 260).