'At first sight, this decoration strikes the eye with its luminosity, and its bursting bright warm colours. These flows of creamy enamels, of glazed laques, of precious lava seem to 'lick' the outlines and surface of the object. Once cooled down, they fix their splendid colour-stains where one can find again the vital nuances of the sea and sky and of gold and blood' (André Derain, 1909 in L. Dutrait, 'Metthey et les Fauves, Un céramiste et des peintres', in La Revue de la céramique et du verre, Vendin-le-Vieil, vol. 89, July - August 1996, p. 22).
André Derain's first encounter with the ceramicist André Metthey dates to 1904, and together they produced over twenty tin-glazed ceramics from 1906 to 1908. Derain transferred with ease the pictorial style employed on his canvases to this new medium, with the subject matter, line and colours recalling his Collioure and Estaque Fauvist paintings. He often intentionally left the bright opaque white of the tin-glazed ceramic visible, as in the present vase, as a contrast to the vibrant colours in the composition, evoking his Collioure paintings. The present work underscores the importance of the human figure in Derain's ceramics, as the arabesques of the nudes curve in harmony with outline of the vase, recreating a lively bacchanalian scene.