15.5 x 10.5 in. (39.37 x 26.67 cm)
Gift of the Nora Eccles Treadwell Foundation
Made in 1982 while working as a production potter in Seattle, Washington, Ken Harju’s Urn exhibits a high level of skill and precision gained through years of consistent throwing practice. Composed of fine porcelain, the piece is glazed in two distinct horizontal sections; the lower a rich brown hue, and the upper a subtle green with a small circlet containing a landscape of wavy tan grasses. The vessel has a wide, stable base that expands slightly into the body of the form and gracefully curves inward from the should to the rim, where small loops provide a secure mechanism to attach a lid.
Akin to so many potters, Ken Harju’s story with ceramics is such that “once you’ve played with clay, it never goes away.” Harju spent several years as an independent studio ceramicist producing his own work before he was hired as a production potter at Studio 5 in Seattle, Washington in 1976. While there his raku and pit fired work, as well as high fired stoneware and porcelain sold at galleries and stores throughout the West Coast region. After ten years in Washington, Harju moved to Costa Mesa, in Southern California, where he established his own studio and continues his pottery practice today.
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