PEDIGREE & PROVENANCE--art words and terms.

Newcomb Pottery

What is it?

In 1894, young faculty from the H. Sophie Newcomb Memorial College (Tulane University in New Orleans, LA) established an ambitious, ground-breaking program of vocational training for young women artists. The program was an experiment to closely entwine the fine arts curriculum with a commercial enterprise. The goal was to provide employment for graduates when there were few work opportunities for women.

How did the business work?

The studio business--which never operated as a factory--produced some 70,000 pieces designed by approximately 90 women artists between 1895 and 1940. Women were always the designers, men were always the potters.

Why is it distinctive?

No two pieces are exactly alike. Nature-oriented motifs--often depicting local flora--were carved into the pottery which was then finished with a matte glaze. While early pieces were monochromatic with dominant colors of blues and greens, later pieces added strong cobalt blue and even pinks and rose colors.

And what is its value today?

For many years Newcomb Pottery was considered the archetypical wedding present in New Orleans. It is exceedingly collectible. A four-color Newcomb pottery vase sold in1996 for $29,700; few Newcomb pieces are valued less than $1000.

View the excellent Newcomb Pottery Exhibition at Tulane.

P&P: Abstract Expressionism
P&P: architectonic
P&P: Arte Povera
P&P: Ash Can School
P&P: bronze patina
P&P: citrine
P&P: Colorfield painting
P&P: Greek columns
P&P: Conceptual Art
P&P: coromandel
P&P: depression glass
P&P: enamel
P&P: encaustic
P&P: etching
P&P: faux
P&P: foreshortening
P&P: gouache
P&P: Iconography & Iconology
P&P: New Image painting
P&P: Newcomb pottery
P&P: parfleche
P&P: Pop Art
P&P: porcelain
P&P: realism
P&P: Senufo
P&P: Surrealism
P&P: turquoise


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