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David Cressey



16.25 x 5 x 5 in.
Museum Permanent Collection

Made after the completion of his master’s degree, David Cressey’s Bottle characterizes his playful experimentation with form and decoration, which was intrinsic to his later practice. This large, wheel-thrown piece has been gently stretched into a softly bellied cylinder, curving up to the classic neck, which could be corked or stoppered. Composed of a dark stoneware clay body with layers of white slip painted onto the surface, the stylized, organic decoration complements and exaggerates the lines of the form itself. This technique evolved into the textured surfaces that are more typical of Cressey’s famous pieces from the 1960s and 1970s.

Born in Los Angeles, California, on February 21, 1916, David Cressey was a multidisciplinary artist known for his painting, ceramic, and sculptural works. He served as a member of the US Army in the South Pacific from 1943 to 1946, after which he pursued a career as an artist. Cressey received both his BA and MFA degrees from University of California, Los Angeles, and remained there for several years as a teacher and studio technician. He also taught at Utah State University, California State College, Long Beach, as well as Mount St. Mary’s College, where he became chairman of the art department.

Ayla Murray

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