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Centerpiece or Wall-Plaque by Antonio Prieto


California studio potter and influential teacher Antonio Prieto was a master of experimentation, while also always remaining faithful to the obligation to history that ceramics-making can ask of its protagonists. This is best seen in Prieto's commitment to linear surface decoration, and this rare (Prieto died prematurely, in the late 1960s) piece displays his draughtsmanship to full effect. This superb piece is decorated with four calligraphic figures, "drawn" by the difficult, and marvelously spontaneous, technique of drizzling slip onto the surface of the piece. These ghostlike figures, vaguely human in form, gradually soften and lose their distinctness, becoming increasingly abstract as the series progresses left-to-right. At once an hommage to tradition (Chinese and Japanese ceramics) and a paean to modernity (abstract Expressionist painting), this complex object nicely stretches the definition of "applied art." Signed "Prieto."


  • Date of manufacture
    circa 1963
  • Period
  • Materials and techniques
  • Condition
  • Dimensions

    H 8.5 in. x W 14.25 in. x D 1.5 in.

    H 21.59 cm x W 36.2 cm x D 3.81 cm

  • Seller location
    Los Angeles, CA
  • Reference number

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