Bowl, ca. 1971
Mary Rogers (British, born 1929)
Porcelain; H. 1 7/8 in. (4.8 cm), Diam. 6 1/4 in. (15.9 cm)
Bequest of Hope Yampole, 2008 (2008.658.10)
British ceramist Mary Rogers studied graphic design and calligraphy before taking up ceramics at the Loughborough School of Art, where from 1960 to 1964 she studied with the highly regarded potter David Leach. During the 1960s and 1970s in England, an interest in an organic aesthetic coincided with Rogers' desire to make delicate vessels that mimicked shells, leaves, and pebbles. She created small bowls inspired by forms in nature, a subject that had interested her since childhood. In 1968, she began to work with porcelain, rather than the stoneware of her earlier projects, because of its translucent quality. Rogers forms her paper-thin, nonutilitarian vessels directly by pinching and modeling the porcelain, which she finishes by scraping the piece once it has dried. For added surface decoration, she frequently carves the edges and occasionally pierces the body of a vessel. Like this one from the early 1970s, many of her bowls are stained or painted in a pointillist style.