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Karen Massaro

Danish/American, b. 1944

Seed Pods

6.5 x 15 .25 x 15.25 in.
Gift of the Nora Eccles Treadwell Foundation

Karen Massaro’s Seed Pods is a broad, shallow, wheel-thrown stoneware bowl with impressed undulations in the four quadrants of the rim. The exterior is glazed black with gold spots, while the interior is cream-colored with green, blue, and yellow geometric shapes painted on the surface. This style of surface decoration, Massaro states, is “influenced by organic possibilities natural to ceramics,” which include the mutability and acceptance of mark making while the clay remains soft. 

Born in Denmark in 1944, Massaro has had a vibrant career in the United States as a ceramist, a medium that in her mind “integrates form and surface in space, to pose questions about placement, movement, and perception.” She earned a BS in art education from the State University of New York, Buffalo, in 1966 and went on to complete an MFA degree at the University of Wisconsin, Madison, in 1972. Apart from her independent practice, Massaro has also been a visiting artist at the Kohler manufacturing company in Wisconsin, as well as a lecturer at Scripps College in California; the University of Wisconsin, Madison; Ohio State University; and Beloit College.

Ayla Murray

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