Archive for the ‘anecdotal’ Category

Make-Dos at Montreal Museum of Fine Arts

Saturday, January 6th, 2018

Last week I spent a few frigid days in Montreal, Canada, and stumbled upon a few make-dos hiding in plain sight at the Montreal Museum of Fine Art.

Scars (suture) Jar by Tamsin van Essen, 2007. Glazed earthenware.

Bottle, Iran, 2nd half of 17th-early 18th c. Frit body, overglaze lustre decoration, blue glaze. Later metal replacement neck.

Jug, Germany, c.1595. Salt-glazed stoneware, pewter lid with later pewter repairs.

Happy Holidays!

Sunday, December 24th, 2017

Wishing you all the best for the holidays and hoping 2018 is all it’s cracked up to be!

Connecticut Ceramics Study Circle lecture

Sunday, December 10th, 2017

Tomorrow, December 11, 2017, from 1:15pm – 3:00pm, I will be giving a talk at the Connecticut Ceramics Study Circle, at the Bruce Museum in Greenwich, CT. Please stop by if you are in the neighborhood.

Click HERE for more information. Hope to see you there.

 

 

My collection is back, and so am I!

Thursday, November 23rd, 2017

After a brief break from posting, I am back with more to share from my collection of antiques with inventive repairs.

Last weekend, the nearly 300 pieces from my collection, on loan to Boscobel for the exhibit Make-Do’s: Curiously Repaired Antiques, were returned to me. I was without them for almost a year and during that time, the suddenly empty shelves in my office slowly filled up with books and other household items. Due to time restraints, rather than methodically return the hundreds of teapots, jugs, plates, cups, goblets, etc. to my shelves in an orderly fashion, I was just able to pile them up all around the house, praying that my 2 young cats, Grady and Oscar, wouldn’t turn my prized repaired pieces back into broken antiques. As I have said before, there’s nothing more redundant than a broken make-do. So far, I am happy to report that everything is still intact!

Looking ahead, I may not be posting every week as I have for the past nearly 7 years, so please be patient with me between lapses in my posts. I have some exciting new projects I am working on and will share the results in the near future. Thank you for following my blog, which continues to bring me great pleasure, as I acquire and research new pieces and write these posts.

Boscobel exhibit extended one week!

Sunday, October 1st, 2017

Due to an outcry from a throng of adoring fans of antiques with inventive repairs, the powers that be at Boscobel House and Gardens have agreed to extended the exhibit, Make-Do’s: Curiously Repaired Antiques. For those of you who did not get the chance to see it, or for those who would like to see it again, you now have until next Sunday, October 8th, to witness the beauty of Boscobel and see hundreds of examples from my collection.

Photos courtesy of Bibiana Famolare

 

Photographing my collection at Boscobel

Sunday, September 10th, 2017

This past week I spent two days documenting the exhibit Make-Do’s: Curiously Repaired Antiques at Boscobel House and Gardens in Garrison, NY with photographer Joshua McHugh and his assistant Scott Irvine. They did an outstanding job shooting pieces from my collection throughout the house using only natural light.

Here are a few photos I took of Joshua at work and various shots from the exhibit. My sincere thanks to Jennifer Carlquist, Ed Glisson, and the staff of Boscobel for their generosity and support during our time there.

The Beauty of Imperfection at Boscobel

Sunday, July 30th, 2017

Recently at Boscobel House and Gardens in Garrison, NY, I was on a panel, The Beauty of Imperfection, alongside theatrical set designer Sandra Goldmark and metalwork artist Myra Mimlitsch-Gray. It was moderated by Glenn Adamson, the former Director of the Museum of Arts and Design in New York, with an introduction by Jennifer Carlquist, curator of the current exhibition, Make-Do’s: Curiously Repaired Antiques.

The talk was lively and included diverse topics including: aesthetics of repairs, restoration in the decorative arts, contemporary repair cafes, and the return of the relic. At the conclusion, enthusiastic crowd members asked thoughtful questions and made pertinent comments. Clearly, the topics of imperfection and early repairs have made an impact with the public, especially with those who have walked through the rooms of Boscobel and have seen the exhibit.

Photos by Lauren Daisley

Photos by Bibiana Famolare

Boscobel opening reception

Sunday, July 9th, 2017

Yesterday was the opening reception of Make-Do’s: Curiously Repaired Antiques at Boscobel House and Gardens in Garrison, NY. It was thrilling to see hundreds of pieces from my collection thoughtfully placed within the stunning Federal-style house, as well as in the gallery on the lower level. This first of its kind exhibition was brilliantly curated by Jennifer Carlquist, who freely admits to stalking me for the past 16 years, after seeing my make-do’s featured in Martha Stewart Living. Jennifer’s knowledge, passion, and sensitivity can be seen in the placement of each item in every room of the house and gallery. Thank you Jennifer for allowing my collection to be seen in a new light, in a gorgeous old house.

Special thanks to Executive Director Steven Miller who, without hesitation, bravely said yes to the idea of presenting a show featuring broken objects, and to Edward Glisson for his wonderful displays and technical wizardry seen throughout the gallery. And thanks to my friends and family who made the journey to Garrison to share this special event with me.

I urge you all to come see this exhibit, on view now through October 1. I will be back at Boscobel on July 21 for a panel discussion, The Beauty of Imperfection, moderated by Glenn Adamson, the former Director of the Museum of Arts and Design in New York. I will also be giving a talk on Friday, September 22, so come see the exhibit, stroll the grounds, take in the stunning view of the Hudson River and say hi.

Photos courtesy of Mark Randall and Bibiana Famolare

“Pot and Tea” exhibit at HKIA

Sunday, July 2nd, 2017

Last weekend, on my return flight home after a three month gig working on a movie in Malaysia and Singapore, I had a four hour layover at Hong Kong International Airport. In my bleary-eyed stupor, I literally stumbled upon this small exhibit, Pot and Tea. Much to my surprise, I discovered many a make-do among the undamaged (I prefer not to use the word “perfect”) ceramics.

Here are some examples of inventive repair from this small, yet well curated, collection. I have included the corresponding labels, misspellings intact.

“Tonkard with Appliqué Decoration, English Imitation of Yixing Ware. Late 17th century.”

“Dutch Teapot in Imitation of Yixing Ware. Early 18th century.”

NUS Museum, Singapore

Saturday, June 10th, 2017

Yesterday I visited the NUS Museum, a beautifully designed and well curated museum on the campus of National University of Singapore. Naturally, I was on the lookout for antiques with inventive repairs and happily, found some examples to write about.

The Lee Kong Chian gallery on the lobby level features Chinese export ceramics from the Lee Kong Chian Museum and the archaeological collection of Dr. John Miksic. Hiding in plain sight was this vase made during the Southern Song Dynasty (1127-1279), in Jinjiang, Fujian. Its silver replacement lid and collar were added hundreds of years later.

Also on the lobby level is the Archaeology Library, which includes thousands of excavated ceramic shards and artifacts, on loan from institutions and private collectors.

I spotted this blue & white porcelain hulu (gourd-shaped) ewer from the Yuan Dynasty (1271-1368) among hundreds of ceramics, in the Resource Gallery on the top level. I have always loved galleries such as this, as they are typically more casual than curated exhibits and have a bit of an antiques shop or flea market vibe.