Julia Phillips Signed Organic Raku Pottery Melon Vase in Burnt Orange
A fabulous one-of-a-kind raku pottery five-lobe vase crafted by raku potter and teacher Julia Phillips, taking on the organic shape of a melon (or is it an oversized tomato??), perfectly matched to a burnt orange glaze.
Known for 'works of brilliant colors that alluded to pumpkins or giant squashes,' this scrumptious creation holds true to Ms. Phillips' signature creativity, and likely dates to the 1970s or 1980s. Whatever its form, the rich, warm colors and mature raku glaze treatment make it a ripe beauty ready for any pottery collection.
For those not yet familiar with Ms. Phillips' work, she taught at the Virginia Commonwealth University (VCU) evening school, the Penland School, the Hand Workshop, as well as her own studio, The Potter’s Center. She was credited by some as having popularized the cracked-finish raku style, which 'was emerging in the American crafts movement as a retro reaction to the school of modernism.' An obituary write-up in the Richmond Times can be found here.
As the photo gallery confirms, I took quite a few pictures, most inside but a few outside in natural light. I attempted to pare the photo gallery down to a reasonable size, but just couldn't bring myself to deprive viewers of all of the cracked finishes and drips in the raku glaze, a captivating view up close and in person. This vase is in excellent vintage condition. While there are a few tiny pops in the glaze, these are as made, and I find nothing that appears to be post-creation damage.
This vase measures 7 inch high, 8 inch in diameter, with a mouth opening of 2-1/2 inch. Signed Julia Phillips R1 on the underside, as shown, and accompanied by the original 'Julia Philips - One of a Kind' folding studio card.