Paul Soldner

Peter’s Auction Pick of the Day: California Clay

October 7, 2016

Los Angeles Modern Auctions (LAMA)

Los Angeles was fertile ground for some of the greatest achievements of the American Studio Ceramic Movement between the 1940s and the 1970s. In the auction on Sunday, October 9th, LAMA offers a number of examples by the leading practitioners of the movement whose work served as a catalyst in re-shaping attitudes toward clay. From Peter Voulkos and Paul Soldner, to Stan Bitters and Gertrud & Otto Natzler, Peter Loughrey, director of LAMA, provides his expert insight on the state of clay, while curator Jo Lauria contextualizes these masters works and their lasting influence. Read on!

Jun Kaneko: Dualities in Clay

May 2, 2016

Lot 99, Jun Kaneko, Untitled (Dango) (1999)

The work of ceramic artist Jun Kaneko embodies two distinct sensibilities: there is the spirituality inherent in the ancient pottery traditions of his native Japan, and there are the modernist impulses born of his studies under the masters of the California Clay Movement. Kaneko has preferred oversized formats, which he believes foster a deeper engagement with the viewer. His signature form, a series he calls Dango—Japanese for “dumpling”—can be as large as ten feet tall. Their making requires both patience and virtuosic technical prowess. Kaneko has estimated that only two in ten works survive the laborious building, drying, and firing process without cracking or exploding. Yet when successful, Kaneko realizes some of the most profound work in contemporary art.

Peter’s Auction Pick of the Day: Otis College and the Ceramic Revolution

May 14, 2015

Otis College Ceramics, Los Angeles Modern Auctions, May 17, 2015 Auction

The Los Angeles County Art Institute, which became the Otis College of Art and Design, was at the center of ceramic’s evolution as an artistic medium in America. In 1954 Peter Voulkos became head of its ceramics department. He brought with him energy, strength and a bold streak influenced by Abstract Expressionism–all new elements for the discipline. The kilns at Otis College became the launching pad for the new ceramic artistry. Voulkos’s students and colleagues joined the signal artistic movements of the sixties and seventies.

From Peter Loughrey, Director of Modern Design:

Ceramics came into its own as a fine art form in the 1950s. Clay had been regarded as a second-class medium–more artisanal than artistic.

The crucible of that change was the Otis College of Art and Design in Los Angeles, in the ceramics studio headed by Peter Voulkos. LAMA’s May 17th auction includes a wonderful group of lots featuring the work of Voulkos and his colleagues and students–every significant artist at the heart of that revolution, including Paul Soldner, John Mason, Henry Takemoto, Ken Price, and Billy Al Bengston.

Peter’s Post-Auction Picks: Top 5 Unsold Investment Lots

June 29, 2011

The June 26, 2011 Modern Art  & Design auction had a high sell-through rate of 75%, but some may wonder, “what happens to the other 25% that did not sell?”  Well, we sell these unsold lots post-auction, meaning you can beat the competition and purchase these pieces NOW.  These unsold lots are not to be […]

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