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Object Timeline

1921

  • Work on this object began.

1930

  • Work on this object ended.

1988

  • We acquired this object.

2015

2016

2020

  • You found it!

Plate (USA), 1921–30

This is a Plate. It was made by Henry Varnum Poor. It is dated 1921–30 and we acquired it in 1988. Its medium is hand-thrown and glazed earthenware. It is a part of the Product Design and Decorative Arts department.

Upon his return from military service in Europe in 1919, Henry Varnum Poor settled in an artists’ community in New City, New York where he purchased land and established his art practice. As a struggling painter Poor was always looking for ways to economize; one day he began making kitchenware out of some local clay. Enthralled with the material, Poor purchased a kiln from a friend, made a potter’s wheel, and began experimenting with historical techniques that he learned from reading every pottery book that he could get his hands on. The plate was one of his favorite forms and he treated it as a canvas. Referencing familiar painting genres, Poor created still lives, landscapes and portraits that showed influences of German expressionism and Cubism.

This object was bequest of James H. Stubblebine. It is credited Bequest of James H. Stubblebine.

Its dimensions are

H x diam.: 3.8 × 20.2 cm (1 1/2 × 7 15/16 in.)

It is signed

In black, lower right of landscape: "HV Poor"

Cite this object as

Plate (USA), 1921–30; Made by Henry Varnum Poor (American, 1888 – 1971); hand-thrown and glazed earthenware; H x diam.: 3.8 × 20.2 cm (1 1/2 × 7 15/16 in.); Bequest of James H. Stubblebine; 1988-44-1

This object was previously on display as a part of the exhibition Ellen DeGeneres Selects.

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<ref name=CH>{{cite web |url=https://collection.cooperhewitt.org/objects/18628631/ |title=Plate (USA), 1921–30 |author=Cooper Hewitt, Smithsonian Design Museum |accessdate=1 October 2020 |publisher=Smithsonian Institution}}</ref>