|About the Book|
This long overdue study brings to life the art of Robert Sperry (1927-1998). Known primarily as a ceramic artist, Sperry was also a painter, sculptor, filmmaker, printmaker, and teacher. This copiously illustrated volume reveals the dynamic tensions within Sperrys art and life along with the achievements that led the Pacific Northwest artist to international recognition. In addition to creative innovations in pottery, Sperry is best known for his public art murals made of preformed stoneware tiles covered with a special application of liquid clay. These are given full discussion, along with the artists final wall plates and computer prints. Robert Sperry: Bright Abyss gives a panoramic view of an important artist whose contributions to American ceramics and contemporary art are now secure. Matthew Kangas elucidates the pieces illustrated - chargers, platters, wall plaques, sculptures, and murals. Sperry is known as a master of the crawl glaze which is a ceramic technique resulting in a surface not unlike a parched and cracking lake-bed. The technical difficulties of handling this particular glaze are monumental and speak to Sperrys persistence in experimentation. Sperrys signature, bold, crackling black and white sculptures represent the dichotomy of a bright abyss.