AMOCA’s Collecting California

AMOCA’s Collecting California

Date:Oct 13, 2012 Ages: Price:museum entry Type:exhibit Location:399 South Garey Ave, Pomona CA

The American Museum of Ceramic Art in Pomona presents Collecting California in The Vault, October 13th, 2012 to January 26th, 2013.

Opening reception: October 13th, 2nd Saturday, 6-9pm

Catalog: “Weil Ware in the California Scene”


The pieces in this show characterize the boom of production ceramics that flourished in mid-century Southern California, the height of which saw over 600 ceramic factories producing a wide range of col-lectibles, dinner ware and household items. The cheerful colors, charming forms, and unique styles made them both popular and practical, while at the same time off-setting the unpleasant realities of the Great Depression and WWII. During the post-war era, the “made in the USA” tag appealed to the patriotic spirit of returning GIs while their style, specific to California, typified the “land of opportunity” and cas-ual lifestyle of the state.

The largest segment of this exhibition consists of the Weil Ware donation made to AMOCA by Jody and Scott Sieglers. Their gift is a tribute to their daughter, Julia, and celebrates both her passion and profi-ciency for the ceramic arts, and it signifies their desire to ignite that passion in other young persons. The Weil Ware dinnerware, made in Los Angeles, was produced in mix and match forms and featured pastel shades with hand painted images of bamboo, mangos, and flowers. The exhibition includes the Siegler’s gift of vintage photographs taken in the Weil Ware plant (top, middle). This unique and never-before-seen pairing will offer visitors a glimpse into the work environment of these production facilities includ-ing modes of dress, jobs available, and technical aspects of the large and small ceramics companies pre-sent in Southern California by the 1950s.

AMOCA has produced a catalog in celebration of the Weil Ware donation, placing these pieces within the context of the California ceramic scene of the mid-century, including additional images drawn from AMOCA’s Permanent Collection. At the request of the Sieglers, catalogs will be on sale for $19.95 during the exhibition, with proceeds going to support AMOCA’s outreach and educational programs at the re-quest of the Sieglers.

Also exhibited are groupings of collectibles from Freeman McFarlin, a gift of Wilber Held; animal figu-rines made by Howard Pierce, a gift in memory of Beverly L. Hemingway; Florence ceramic figurines do-nated by Doug Foland; El Patio dinnerware, produced by Gladding McBean, gifted by Gabe Ugolini; and additional examples of California ware given to AMOCA by Thomas Ahern, Martin Ehrlich, and Mary Humboldt.

AMOCA 399 South Garey Ave. (909) 865-3146