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Starting in 1967, the ASU Art Museum consciously undertook the building of a contemporary studio ceramics collection, one of the few fine art museums to do so at a time when craft-based media was relegated as a decorative or minor art form. From its inception, the collection was displayed in open storage. This concept allows year-round access to a majority of our permanent collection, providing students, scholars and the general public an opportunity to view important works.
Every year, the Ceramics Research Center features three to five exhibitions on important movements and artists who have made significant contributions in the ceramics field. The holdings demonstrate the full range of technique, aesthetic approaches and possibilities within the medium. Major artists represented in the collection include Rudy Autio, Hans Coper, Ruth Duckworth, Shoji Hamada, Karen Karnes, Bernard Leach, Maria Martinez, Otto and Gertrud Natzler, Lucie Rie, Edwin and Mary Scheier, Angus Suttie, Akio Takamori, Peter Voulkos, Kurt Weiser and Betty Woodman, to name a few.