A wonderful Mid-Century abstract ceramic sculpture by San Francisco artist Win Ng.
Signed. Single owner, excellent condition. Purchased in California in 1965.
About Win Ng:
Born in San Francisco’s Chinatown, Win Ng established his reputation as a master ceramist, with an initial focus on abstract, non-utilitarian works in the tradition of his mentor Peter Voulkos.
After service in the army, he studied ceramics at the California School of Fine Arts (the San Francisco Art Institute today), and received his BFA in 1959.
In 1958 he had his first one-man show at the Michow Gallery in New York, and in 1961 began being represented by Braunstein Gallery in San Francisco (now the Braunstein/Quay Gallery), who continues to represent his work posthumously. Many critics agree that Ng’s important work dates from 1958 to 1965, the years before he shifted his creative output from gallery art to more functional work.
This functional work was a collaborative entrepreneurial endeavor with artist Spaulding Taylor. As co-founder of Environmental Ceramics (later to be named Taylor & Ng), Win Ng established himself as a consummate decorative designer and innovative entrepreneur. Taylor & Ng shifted the paradigm in retail merchandising by raising the awareness and perception of the mass market toward finely wrought hand-crafted artware, and in the process became the model for many culinary and speciality stores to follow. The Chinese wok was just one of many objects Taylor & Ng help to popularize.
Following a twenty-year journey (from 1965 to 1985) Taylor & Ng grew from a small ceramics shop on Howard Street in San Francisco, to a mega, multi-level emporium at Embarcadero Center. Other stores followed, as well as a Taylor & Ng shop inside Macy’s in New York.
Ng continued with his fine art even during this two-decade decorative period. He produced a veritable torrent of work—thrown ceramic bowls, pots, bottles, vases, dishes, slab constructions, sculptures in earthenware and metal, paintings, drawings, book illustrations, as well as hundreds of decorative designs for Taylor & Ng—in scales ranging from minute to monumental. And while this public departure from the purely fine art realm may have cost him an iconic reputation in the gallery/museum world, it was his renewed focus on fine art in the final years of his life, as well as his innovations in decorative and ceramic arts that underscore his important contribution as a post-modern artist. In the last decade of his life (1981-1991) Win Ng would leave the retail world and re-visit in earnest his deep passion, “bringing together in one integrated work” his artful life.
– edited excerpt from "Rehistoricizing the Time Around Abstract Expressionism in the Bay Area" by Allen R. Hicks
8.75"h x 5.5"w x 1.75d
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