Robert A. Ellison Donates to Metropolitan Museum, Featured in NYTimes
Wednesday January 14, 2009

Robert A. Ellison Donates to Metropolitan Museum, Featured in NYTimes

Robert A. Ellison, author of The Mad Potter of Biloxi and noted collector of ceramics, is donating 250 pieces from his esteemed collection to the Metropolitan Museum of Art, to be featured prominently in the museum's American Wing permanent collection. New York Times reporter Carol Vogel spoke with Ellison about this new venture, and his long history appreciating and collecting fine ceramic works.

Read the article here: Major Gift of Pottery to Adorn Met's American Wing

Learn more about the pieces donated here: Met Collects: Robert A Ellison & The Robert A Ellison Collection


The Mad Potter of Biloxi

The Art and Life of George E. Ohr


A brilliantly written, lavishly produced volume on an important yet little- known clay artist.

Misunderstood and unappreciated during his lifetime (1857-1918), George Ohr, America's archetypal artist-potter, pushed the form of the vessel beyond mere function to the point of abstraction. Today the genius of this radical and sophisticated artist has finally been recognized. His thin-walled, paper-light pots, labeled grotesque in his day, are now seen as a tour de force of delicacy and restraint and a stunning exploration of the plasticity of clay. Ruffling, twisting, tearing, and collapsing his fragile pots, Ohr anticipated much of what we take for granted in contemporary art and ceramics.

Stunningly illustrated with 140 color images of his most important pieces, this landmark volume, winner of the George Wittenborn Award for outstanding art books from the Art Libraries Society of North America, presents the first major study of Ohr. Beautifully woven together, the text and images confirm a judgment the Mad Potter once passed on himself: "Unequaled! Unrivaled! Undisputed!" he wrote on a sign outside his shop, "Greatest Art Potter on Earth!"

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