Vibrant, colorful ceramics shown at AMOCA

Maydeen Merino
Staff Writer

Jo Laurie, curator of the “Silver Splendor: The Art of Anna Silver,” spoke about Silver’s accomplishments and vibrant ceramic artwork.

The reception took place at the American Museum of Ceramic Art on Saturday, March 9.

The exhibit presented the evolution of Silver’s modern ceramic artwork and contained several series of her other work. 

The reception, attended by about 50 people, offered a friendly and social atmosphere as guests were offered food and listened to music. 

“Her work is emblematic says Garth Clark, who is a ceramic art historian,” Laurie said. 

The California Gold Rush era inspired artists to use a lot of color and exuberant themes that also included luster. Silver certainly has that technique down, Laurie said.

The exhibit features some of her most iconic work, such as “Teapots: Steeped in Imagination,” which are functional teapots created at an abnormally large scale. 

Silver’s teapots are either oval or circular shaped, with saturated colors and abstract designs painted onto them. This ceramic technique of adding color is a rarity because it makes the process more difficult.

“Her work is so colorful that it just delights people, they enjoy seeing it and seeing all the colors,” said Gene Killian, member of AMOCA. 

“In contrast to the colorful work that Anna Silver does, a lot of potters just stick with the natural colors of clay, I tend to do that too because it requires a higher temperature,” Killian said. 

Some of Silver’s other work featured in the exhibit included “Vessels: Greek and Early Mediterranean Influences,” a series inspired by Greek vases.

The vases she creates were inspired by Greek attic vases, and shared the same silhouettes, proportions and symmetry. 

The vases were painted with Silver’s unique, radiant colors and brush stroke techniques.

“I am grateful that this place is here for the community, it is a healthy way to spend the afternoon,” said Gloria Ostron, student from Mt. San Antonio College. 

The AMOCA is one of the few museums devoted exclusively to ceramic artwork on the west side of the United States. 

“People should come see the exhibit because it is quintessentially California,” Laurie said. 

“One element of the museum that they like to stress is if you’re here in California, you should be able to see some artists from California; Anna has lived in California almost her whole life.”

Around 25 people from Southern California lent Silver’s artwork to the exhibit.

“Anna Silver is a culture icon in Los Angeles and has been working actively in her studio for over 45 years selling work around the country,” Beth Gerstein, executive director of AMOCA, said. 

“This is her first museum exhibition and she deserved to have the acknowledgment so that people can understand the breath of her studio practice.”

The exhibition will run through Aug. 25. 

Maydeen Merino can be reached at

Maydeen Merino

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