The art in both the exhibition and this accompanying catalogue is grouped together in the aesthetic and philosophical associations that have been briefly touched on in this essay. These are loose associations in which relationships can be made between specific objects, but the lines are never firmly drawn, and the groupings are always open to new interpretations and connections. Lines blur as one asks whether it is the color or the structure that makes A Box Bottle by Elizabeth Fritsch (b. 1940) and the bowl (pl. 21) by Christine Jones (b. 1955) seem to belong together. Does a figurative, sculptural ceramic express the inner feeling of the artist in the same way as the spontaneity of a Voulkos "stack," or is the sculpture a manipulation of material with no psychic content?
The contemporary ceramics in the collection of the Metropolitan Museum show the extraordinary breadth of styles postwar artists have been able to create. The aggressive experimentation of Voulkos, Mason, Price, and the other early pottery-making "rule breakers" of the era gave rise to one of the most creative periods in the history of ceramics, as the exhibition and this catalogue seek to demonstrate.