Alex Matisse


Vase. Alex Matisse, East Fork Pottery. 2014.


Cooking Vessel. Artist unknown, Trobriand Islands, Papua New Guinea. Date unknown.

Maker/Collector Statement

On first inspection, it seems that these vessels have very little to do with one another. The pot (Trobriand Island Cooking Vessel) that my grandmother Annette Weiner brought back from her fieldwork in the Trobriand Islands was an old cooking pot and evidence of this can be seen from the dark ring that encircles the footless bottom of the vessel. Both the vase of mine and the Trobriand Islander cooking vessel are mostly free of ornament wherein their significance lie.

Throughout my apprenticeship and the early years of running my own pottery, much of the work I made was intricately decorated. Had I been asked to participate in this show 6 years ago I would have included a beautifully ornamented pot by the Turkish potter and painter Mehmet Gursoy. However, over the past three years I have been decorating less and less, and while I still do decorate a few pieces every firing, I have been enjoying the simple and unadorned more and more. (Vase) Both of these pieces represent work that took me years to grow into and appreciate, and they signal a new direction for my personal work as well as much of the output of East Fork Pottery today.


Alex Matisse