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Gallery Masters
Warren MacKenzie, Karen Karnes and Jan McKeachie Johnston

January 10 - February 7, 2015




Karen Karnes (1925 - 2016)  

November 1925 - July 2016

Karen Karnes passed peacefully at home on July 12th, 2016. She was a towering figure of the postwar studio pottery movement, pioneering salt-glazing in the 1960s and wood-firing in the 1980s. Her work opened undreamed of possibilities of expression for the handmade pot. For the many potters who knew her, she was a mentor whose work embodied the creative power and singular voice to which we all aspire—her life in complete harmony with her creative vision. Karen Karnes was our artist. Her outspoken honesty, wit, and physical grace were unique and irresistible. The solidarity and love for her colleagues and nurturing support for younger potters changed careers and lives. - Mark Shapiro

It has been a great privilege to know and represent Karen Karnes, one of the great artists of our time. From her earliest days her work has been strong and sculptural, including her functional pieces. She followed an inner radar true to her artistic vision and could always be counted on for the truth. -Lucy Lacoste


Warren MacKenzie AMERICAN MASTER  

Warren MacKenzie studied painting at Art Institute of Chicago then switched to ceramics after serving in WWII. Captivated by pottery, he and his wife Alix made regular trips to Field Museum of Natural History. They then went to England for a happy and productive apprenticeship with Bernard Leach in St Ives meeting Lucie Rie, Hans Coper and Shoji Hamada. On their return, they settled in Stillwater, MN where he continued his studio and still lives till today. He became professor of ceramics at the University of Minnesota teaching legions of students and making Minnesota a clay state retiring in 1990 a Regents Professor.

“Don’t overlook the less obvious pieces, the simple bowls, plates or yunomi…extraordinary objects because they are ordinary objects. It is in these that you will find the real pots, the real MacKenzie” John Reeve

The Warren MacKenzie Scholarship Fund has been set up at the Northern Clay Center, Minneapolis MN. A portion of each sale will go to this. Individuals may contribute too. UPDATED August 30 2017


Jan McKeachie Johnston  

Updated 9/23/13 The work of Jan McKeachie-Johnston, a ceramic artist of more than 20 years, grows out of a strong tradition of functional ceramics from England and Japan (Bernard Leach/Shoji Hamada). It has also been informed and inspired by the ancient Minoan pottery of Crete, Jomon pottery of Japan, American Indian and Japanese basket forms, Iranian pottery and African pottery and masks. The sense of form, rich surface patterns and textures of these artistic influences reflect and offer a connection between humanity and art that McKeachie- Johnston has captured in her own work.