Floral Motifs in American Art Pottery

On view July 10 through December 29, 2018


Floral motifs, among the most common decorations found on American Art Pottery, were highly desired by a generation of late nineteenth- and early twentieth-century consumers living and working in a rapidly industrializing nation who sought to bring nature back into the home. 

This intimate exhibition, drawn from the museum's permanent collection, features decorative ware created by a few of Ohio's most celebrated manufacturers, including Weller, Roseville, and J.B. Owens pottery companies.

Prominent and highly skilled Zanesville decorators like Elizabeth Ayers, Hester Pillsbury, and Josephine Imlay were likely influenced by a previous generation of amateur china decorators whose delicate floral patterns gilded elegant porcelain pieces as well as by contemporaries from the American Arts and Crafts movement whose more spirited and painterly flowers and landscape scenery adorned hand-thrown and cast earthenware vases.


Image: Weller Pottery Company, Louwelsa Ewer, circa 1900, clay with underglaze slip. Gift of Raymond W. Thomas, in memory of Eva L. Thomas, 2000.12