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Virginia Cartwright

American, b. 1943


7.125 x 6 x 6 in.
Gift of the Nora Eccles Treadwell Foundation

Virginia Cartwright’s hand and slab-built thin-walled functional work has almost always been left unglazed. She notes, “The skills that I previously learned from dressmaking and metal smithing influenced the construction of my pieces.” To create the forms, she would cut a triangle out of the clay, as in making a dart for constructing a dress bodice, then bring the clay together which pulled in the form. For Jar the cuts were shallower and shorter, pulling in the clay more slightly to create a rounded box. The collar and lid were also hand shaped.

Cartwright was born in Los Angeles and received her Bachelor of Arts at California State University, Long Beach and her Master of Fine Arts from the School for American Craftsmen, Rochester Institute of Technology (RIT), Rochester, New York. She also attended Marguerite Wildenhain’s (see Wildenhain’s 1950s Jar) summer school at Pond Farm in Northern California. At RIT Cartwright studied with and was lab assistant for renowned sculptor Franz Wildenhain, Marguerite’s former husband. Cartwright taught at several schools, including Scripps College, in Claremont, California and Otis Art Institute in Los Angeles.

Billie Sessions, PhD.

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