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Master #264, Pair on Base

Bennett Bean, American, born 1941

Made in United States, North and Central America


Pit-fired earthenware with acrylic decoration (outer surface) and gold leaf decoration (interior)

a: 13 1/2 x 12 3/4 inches (34.3 x 32.4 cm) b: 14 1/4 x 13 1/2 inches (36.2 x 34.3 cm)

Curatorial Department:
American Art

Object Location:

Currently not on view

Accession Number:

Credit Line:
Purchased with funds contributed by The Women's Committee and the Craft Show Committee of the Philadelphia Museum of Art in honor of Nancy M. McNeil, 1999

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Stating that his decorative vessels are “about line, shape, color, pattern, and edge,” Bennett Bean creates complex compositions of undulating, overlapping, and interlocked ceramic slabs like this one. Rich patterns of color and form are found on the surface of his multipartite vessels, sending contrasting messages of spontaneity, patterning (produced in the pit fire), and precision (from the hand-painted geometric designs). Further embellishment of gold leaf on the interior of the work radiates light, providing juxtaposition between interior and exterior space.