MALCOLM WRIGHT

MALCOLM WRIGHT COLLECTION

Ferrin Contemporary is pleased to present the works of Malcolm Wright and offer them for sale. The collection offers an opportunity to acquire important historical works from an artist who is known by some as a functional potter and by others as a sculptor working in clay, is a consummate craftsman of both. He belongs to a group of contemporary ceramic artists who began as potters throwing vessels on the wheel, and then, seeking to move outside of that tradition, found hand building as a way to broaden their artistic vocabulary.

BRONZES

CONSTRUCTED FORMS

CUBES & HOUSES

POD FORMS

SCULPTURAL FORMS

SEA & STAR CREATURES

WORKS IN MUSEUMS & COLLECTIONS

Malcolm Wright, Portrait by Andrew Hood

CV

American, b. 1939, Minnesota
worked in Marlboro, VT; lives in Shelburne, VT

Malcolm Wright, who is known by some as a functional potter and by others as a sculptor working in clay, is a consummate craftsman of both. He belongs to a group of contemporary ceramic artists who began as potters throwing vessels on the wheel, and then, seeking to move outside of that tradition, found hand building as a way to broaden their artistic vocabulary. From the 1960s until his retirement in 2015, Wright produced a prodigious body of functional stoneware that was honed from an immersion in the Japanese tradition of Karatsu pottery. Since about 2000, he constructed handbuilt, tabletop-sized sculptures, setting aside the notion that clay objects must serve a functional purpose. Both bodies of work have been wood-fired, mostly in his “split bamboo” Korean-style kiln, set on property in rural Marlboro, Vermont, where Wright and his family lived for over 45 years.

Malcolm Wright was born in Minnesota. He earned a BA from Marlboro College, an MFA from George Washington University, and was an apprentice to a 12th-generation Japa- nese potter Tarouemon Nakazato in Karatsu, Japan, working directly under Takashi Nakazato.


MORE ON MALCOLM WRIGHT


View Malcolm’s Catalog:

MALCOLM WRIGHT: MOVING BEYOND TRADITION 

In my college years, I was interested in the roots of modernism, from the development of cubism, constructivism, and futurism to Scandinavian design, and the time/ space elements in architecture. These interests were interrupted for 30 years by my deep involvement with Japan, functional pottery for food and owers, and in the ascetic, restrained taste of tea ceremony pottery.

Over the last 35 years, my early interest has reawakened. Walking around the fields among Chuck Ginnivers’s monumental sculptures, here in Vermont, inspired me to revisit these interests. Slowly, I became aware of the power of minimalism as expressed in Tony Smith’s work. More recently, the work of Jorge Oteiza and the foam sculptures of John Chamberlin have been a source of inspiration.

The nature of clay and my years working with tabletop scale directs me to a small size that is comfortable, yet retains power. I am interested in dry surfaces, without ash build up, and negative space. I think the sense of Japanese restraint and Western minimalism combine in these pieces, the forms, and ideas I studied more that 50 years ago.

— Malcolm Wright

ADDITIONAL
PRESS & MEDIA

?Profiles of Late Style: Malcolm Wright?
by Leah Hood,
Nov 18, 2016

Published date 2018