Archives for September 2008

Lots of Pots – Old House Interiors Article

The September/October issue of Old-House Interiors featured an article titled "Lots of Pots" which focused on early 20th century American art pottery as well as contemporary studio pottery.  The article included a nice summary of active contemporary studio potters including:Dsc_3945

  • Carol Mead
  • Common Ground
  • C. Powell Pottery
  • David Dreaching Pottery
  • Door Pottery
  • Ephraim Faience Pottery
  • Katrich Studios
  • Kreigh Art Ceramics
  • Lonesomeville Pottery
  • Nichibei Potters
  • Sassafras Pottery
  • Seiz Pottery
  • Studio 233
  • Suzanne Crane
  • Turtle Island Pottery
  • Verdant Tile Co.

The article also includes many photographs showing very decorative displays of Newcomb, Rookwood, Fulper, North Dakota, Van Briggle as well as numerous contemporary pots.  While the photographs and pottery displays are nicely done, a couple of the article’s photo captions are incorrect and somewhat comical.  One caption referring to a display of contemporary Van Briggle notes that "early Van Briggle is prized because it is dense and difficult to chip."  Another caption referring to a Rookwood elephant paperweight designed by McDonald introduced in 1925 and totally unrelated to Van Briggle notes that "Artus and Anna Van Briggle were sculptors at heart, as this 3-D elephant paperweight shows."

Still, if you are looking for a summary listings of historic potteries still in operation, studio potters, slip-cast pottery and porcelain as well as vintage, reproduction and studio pottery dealers, the article is worth checking out.

Greg Myroth – Shop For Contemporary Studio Pottery

McCoy Pottery in the News

McCoy Pottery has recently been receiving a lot of press in various art pottery publications.  The August 2008 issue of the McCoy Lovers NMXpress features an article about a previously undiscovered and potentially one-of-a-kind Cope designed McCoy butterfly planter.  The rare planter was discovered in July during the annual Pottery Lovers Festival in Zanesville, Ohio.

The unique butterfly planter is significantly different from the pastel butterfly line produced by Nelson McCoy in the 1940s.  The planter is 8 1/2" long by 4" wide and is glazed in a brown matte, bisque wood-tone glaze. NMXpress reports the McCoy planter sold for almost $1,000. 

In other McCoy pottery news, the May/June 2008 issue of the Journal of American Art Pottery Association featured a rare McCoy elephant planter on the cover.  The article, titled " Yes, McCoy is Art" discusses the rare elephant planter purchased by the authors and the fact that McCoy produced many art pottery lines such as Loy-Nel-Art, Rosewood and Olympia. These art pottery patterns produced by McCoy are comparable to those standard glaze and hand-painted patterns produced by Roseville, Weller, Owens and other Ohio art potteries.  The article also points out that while Roseville, Rookwood, Weller and most of the other well known American art potteries employed many artists and decorators, there were only two designers at McCoy from the mid 1930s through the 1960s (Sidney Cope and his son Leslie). Earlier designers were Albert Cusick and Walter Bauer.

To further substantiate the claim that McCoy pottery is no longer just low priced mass produced pottery, the article notes the sale price for the rare elephant plant was an astounding $5,000.  Several other record sale prices for McCoy pottery including a $10,000 McCoy cookie jar sold in 1998 and the prototype McCoy Robin Hood Planter sold at auction for $11,500 in 2006 are also discussed. In addition I have noted several large McCoy sphinx floor vases and sand jars have sold at auction in recent months with most selling in $2,000 to $4,000 range. 

Greg Myroth – Shop for McCoy Pottery

Modern Day Pottery Masters, Part 3

If you’re looking for potteries that still produce quality, hand-crafted pieces, you’re in luck.  There are several potters who create contemporary works of art that remind us of the masterpieces from the turn of the twentieth century.  Hog Hill Pottery and Common Ground Pottery are two more contemporary studio potters that offer vases, tiles, bowls, and more in the Arts and Crafts style.

Hog Hill Pottery

This North Carolina studio is where John and Scottie Post create their handcrafted pottery.  Dsc8942_2 The Posts, who have over 30 years of pottery experience between them, make decorative and functional stoneware that is inspired by the motifs of the Arts and Crafts movement. 

Much like the Natzlers of the mid century studio pottery era, the Posts works together to produce original works of art.  John’s throwing and firing skills combined with Scottie’s design and glazing expertise results in pieces that are truly reminiscent of the original American Art Pottery.

The Posts’ style isn’t limited to Arts and Crafts, however.  They offer a line of folk art items, including jugs, chicken waterers, and rooster bookends.  Their catalog also contains a selection of samples that were created with the Spanish/Moorish cuerda seca technique.  Hog Hill pieces can be purchased at one of the many Arts and Crafts shows that the Posts attend.  We also usually have a few examples of Hog Hill available through Just Art Pottery

Common Ground Pottery

Eric Olson discovered his love for pottery on the first night of the wheel pottery class he took in 1994.  He sold his greenhouse business and opened Common Ground Pottery in a spare room of his house shortly after.  Callalilyvase Olson has been experimenting with glazes and surface decorations ever since, resulting in unique art pottery that has become popular with collectors.

Common Ground Pottery’s online gallery includes vases, chargers, tiles, and jewel boxes with colored glass inside.  His designs are intricately detailed with elements from all aspects of nature.  Some have repeating floral patterns, and others feature animals and insects.  Whether he uses calla lilies, mushrooms, beetles, or butterflies, the overall effect is stunning.

Eric Olson’s studio is located in Wisconsin, but collectors can purchase Common Ground Pottery from the website.  Olson also travels to select Arts and Crafts shows including the Grove Park Arts and Crafts Show every February and the Wisconsin Pottery Show every August.

Just Art Pottery