Texas Clay: 19th Century Stoneware from The Bayou Bend Collection
by Amy Curlander (Author), Joey Brackner (Author), Michael K. Brown (Author)
Texas Clay: 19th-Century Pottery from the Bayou Bend Collection focuses on early examples of Texas pottery in the collection of the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston, house museum for early American decorative arts and paintings, and on the vibrant tradition of handmade, utilitarian pottery that flourished in mid- to late-19th-century Texas. The stoneware jugs, jars, butter churns, and pitchers on display were turned on a potter’s wheel by professional potters, their family members, and African American slaves trained in the craft, some of whom went on to open their own operations after emancipation. Bayou Bend’s unparalleled Texas collection, the largest of its kind, includes outstanding examples of vessels by master potters from the principal stoneware manufacturing regions of Texas. Highlights of the exhibition include distinctively shaped and glazed vessels by master potter John Leopard, jugs and jars from the Guadalupe Pottery of Guadalupe County owned by the Reverend John M. Wilson, and works by celebrated potter Hiram Wilson, who established one of the first African American owned-and-operated enterprises in Texas.