AFA Autumn 2019

Antiques & Fine Art 79 2019 After fleeing their native Vienna in 1938 to escape the Nazi invasion, Gertrud Amon Natzler and Otto Natzler set up a studio in Los Angeles where they became central figures in the California design movement. They collaborated until Gertrud’s death and thereafter, Otto continued to work in new directions by hand-building more sculptural works. Their ceramics became a special collecting focus of the Lynches after they met Otto in the mid-1980s. Together, the Natzlers created works of unified form and surface color. Gertrud was responsible for throwing the earthenware pots on a traditional pottery wheel, using her hands to create thin-walled vessels, plates, and bowls of impeccable symmetry. She turned each finished form over to Otto for glazing. He mastered the unpredictable properties of the kiln and experimented with more than two thousand glaze recipes, ranging from brightly colored glass-like finishes to highly textured “lava” and “crater” glazes. Gertrud Amon Natzler (1908–1971) and Otto Natzler (1908–2007). Glazed earthenware (left to right): Compressed bowl (ca. 1968). H. 7½, D. 11½ in. Footed vase (1972). H. 8½, D. 7½ in. Footed bowl (1965). H. 5, D. 6 in. Carolyn and Peter Lynch Collection. Works dating primarily from the twentieth century, include Native American artists such as Lonnie Vigil and Tony Da, along with furniture makers Sam Maloof and George Nakashima, and ceramists Gertrude and Otto Natzler, all of whom departed from or reinterpreted traditions while they experimented with forms, materials, and techniques. Together these works by both historical and modern artists celebrate the dynamic nature of art in America through the course of three centuries.  Dean Lahikainen is the Carolyn and Peter Lynch Curator of American Decorative Art at the Peabody Essex Museum, Salem, Mass. A Passion for American Art Selections from the Carolyn and Peter Lynch Collection is on view through December 1, 2019, at the Peabody Essex Museum, Salem, Mass. PEM is the only venue for the show. A fully illustrated catalogue is available published by the Peabody Essex Museum and distributed by the University of Massachusetts Press (2019).