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Maker: Magdalene Anyango N. Odundo
born 1950, Kenya
Reduced Mixed-Color Symmetrical Piece
Date: 1990
Medium: Ceramic, slip
Dimensions: H x W x D: 35.2 x 24.0 x 24.0 cm (13 7/8 x 9 7/16 x 9 7/16 in.)
Credit Line: Museum purchase
Geography: Kenya
Object Number: 91-4-2
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Object is not currently on exhibit

Odundo regards her pieces as nonutilitarian containers of form and color, describing the subtle, elegant shapes as "capturing the unfurling of a plant, the fall of a Victorian sleeve, the momentary stillness of a dancer's sleeve, or the silhouette of a Kenyan woman bound in layers of cloth." (Marla Berns. 1995. Ceramic Gestures: New Vessels by Magdalene Odundo. Santa Barbara: University Art Museum, University of California, p. 25) These works are hand-coiled, scraped smooth with a gourd, coated with slips and burnished. The color is dependent upon the firing technique. The black pots are stuffed with combustibles (wood chips and shavings) and undergo a second firing.

Wide-necked spherical shaped vessel with a black and red/orange body produced by a reduction atmosphere in a gas kiln. Two small handles are on either side of the neck at the bottom, with 6 small conical projections on the neck; 3 on one side and 3 on the other with the first 2 at the top and the other 4 just above the handles at the bottom of the neck.

Encounters with the Contemporary, National Museum of African Art, Smithsonian Institution, Washington, D.C., January 7, 2001-January 6, 2002

Anthony Ralph Gallery. 1990. Magdalene Odundo. Gallery catalog with foreward by Lord Queensbury, p. 21, left.

Cooper, Emmanuel. 2004. Magdalene Odundo. Aldershot, England: Lund Humphries, pp. 58, 110, no. 72.

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