Archive for the ‘Museum’ Category

Treasure hunting in Providence, RI

Sunday, October 10th, 2021

One of the first things I do with my free time when working on a project out of town is to check out the local museums. I think of it as a treasure hunt and have been successful in spotting ceramics and glassware with inventive repairs in most of the museums and historic houses I have visited throughout the world. Not surprisingly, I found a few nice examples at RISD Museum, a 10 minute walk from the house I am staying in.

Check out these fine examples of early repairs hiding in plain sight. The next time you visit a museum, make your own treasure hunt and try to find staples, replace spouts, and other make-do repairs.

Paul Scott at RISD Museum

Sunday, September 26th, 2021

If you noticed a break in my weekly postings, it is because I have been busy working on a Disney movie in Providence, Rhode Island. The project has been fun so far, allowing me to shop for antiques – as well as other less exciting things – throughout New England. And yes, I have found a few antiques with inventive repairs, which I will post in the near future.

Today I finally made it to RISD Museum to see the work of Paul Scott. Those of you who have been following my posts over the years know that Paul is a ceramic artist from Cumbria, UK. He is known for incorporating kintsugi and other forms of repair into his work, and has exhibited his unique ceramics worldwide. His current exhibit, Raid the Icebox Now/New American Scenery, juxtaposes antique blue and white transfer ware pottery from the museum’s collection alongside Paul’s stunning new work. It is on view now through December 30, 2021 so please stop by if you can.

Inside the Zwinger Palace vaults, part 2

Sunday, August 9th, 2020

For those of you who enjoyed seeing the inventive repairs I posted in part 1, here are more examples. Same intro, new photos.

In May 2016 I traveled to Dresden, Germany, to see the world renowned ceramics collection at the Staatliche Kunstsammlungen Dresden, Porzellansammlung, located in the Zwinger, Dresden’s magnificent palace. Not only did I see the jaw-droppingly gorgeous ceramics, sumptuously displayed in various rooms and hallways of the palace, but I was given a private tour by Heike Ulbricht, conservator of ceramics. Ms. Ulbricht was most generous with her time, spending over 2 hours showing me early repairs sprinkled throughout the collection, and giving me a peek at pieces she and her colleagues were currently working on. Only about 10% of the collection is on view to the public so I was thrilled to witness the astonishing collection of over 20,000 examples, kept cool in underground vaults below the great halls of the palace.

Please take a look at Inside the Zwinger Palace vaults, part 1,  previously posted and containing more examples from the collection.

Painted carved wood figural lid finial on a baluster form covered jar.

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The original porcelain finial.

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Painted plaster replacement lid finial in front, with 2 “perfect” examples at rear.

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Covered jar with resin replacement bird finial on lid.

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Faience replacement lid matches the hexagonal porcelain covered jar beautifully.

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A pair of vases, one with a replacement lid and the other with a bronze replacement lid finial.

Teapot with bronze replacement lid finial in the form of a twig.

More inventive repairs at Corning Museum of Glass

Sunday, February 2nd, 2020

Here are some more examples of antiques with inventive repairs hiding in plain sight throughout the 35 Centuries of Glass Galleries at the Corning Museum of Glass in Corning, NY. Please check out my previous post from August 18, 2019, Inventive repairs at The Corning Museum of Glass, which includes many more photos of impressive early glass repairs.

Flynt Center, Historic Deerfield, MA

Sunday, December 15th, 2019

Last August I stopped by Historic Deerfield, a beautifully preserved Colonial Village in Northern Massachusetts, and found many a make-do scattered throughout a collection of ceramics and glassware on display at the Flynt Center of Early New England Life.

Here are some of my favorite pieces:

On the hunt for inventive repairs at The Art Institute of Chicago

Sunday, October 13th, 2019

I am currently working in Chicago, IL on the Aaron Sorkin movie The Trial of the Chicago 7. The last time I was here was in December 1984 (I was an infant) working on a new production of A Christmas Carol for the Goodman Theatre. My most vivid memories from then were how cold it was outside and how much I enjoyed the Art Institute of Chicago. Eager to return to the museum, I spent a good part of yesterday taking in as much as I could. Naturally, I was on the hunt for anything with an inventive repair, and found a few choice examples.

Goblet (Pokal). Germany, c.1660. A silver disc was used to secure a broken stem.

Container Depicting Warriors, Rulers, and Winged Beings with Trophy Heads. Peru, c.180 B.C./A.D. 500. Before this enormous container was more recently restored, I imagine animal sinew was laced through the large holes, hundreds (thousands?) of years ago.

Bencharong (Five-Colored) Ware Covered Jar. Thailand, c.1850. Look closely for a braided rattan band securing a large crack. I have never seen this method used before and am eager to find more examples.

Although the Chinese export porcelain depicted in this painting by Raphaelle Peale, c.1822, appear to be intact, I’d like to think that when the artist dismantled the still life tableau, all of the fragile pieces fell to the ground and had to be stapled back together. Well, I can dream, can’t I?

Inventive repairs at The Corning Museum of Glass

Sunday, August 18th, 2019

I never know what I’ll stumble upon when I step into a museum for the first time. I certainly had no idea I would find so many fine examples of incredible glassware with early repairs on view at the Corning Museum of Glass in Corning, NY, home to the world’s most comprehensive collection of glass. Although some of the descriptions made mention of the repairs, most did not, so I am pleased to bring these unsung heroes to the forefront.

Here are some highlights I found in the 35 Centuries of Glass Galleries and the Study Gallery. This was such an overwhelming feast for the eyes that I look forward to going back seeing some of my favorites pieces again. I will post more examples at a later date.

Revive, Remix, Respond at The Frick Pittsburgh

Sunday, April 15th, 2018

Last weekend I attended the exhibit Revive, Remix, Respond: Contemporary Ceramic Artists and The Frick Pittsburgh. It was curated by Associate Curator of Decorative Arts, Dawn Brean and included works by Bouke de Vries, Stephen Bowers, Steven Young Lee, and Paul Scott.

The exhibit features work by 19 artists responding to pieces in the Frick Pittsburgh’s collection. Here are a few examples by ceramic artists who embrace the art of inventive repair or repurposing.

Bouke de Vries

Steven Young Lee

Stephen Bowers