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Mid century studio pottery wall plaque by Jean Ames, listed California artist. Titled "Flower Vendor", this was made during the 1940s or 50s. Although a modernist, she was very drawn to creating idealized and pictorial subjects in her work, as she did here with the Mexican flower vendor offering his colorful flowers while riding his turquoise glazed burro.

6 5/8" x 6 5/8" (16.8275 cm x 16.8275 cm)
Height 1" (2.54 cm)

Signed "Jean" on the front, the back of the plaque reads ""Flower Vendor", "Jean Ames", "Padua Hills", "Calif". Her studio was located in Padua Hills, part of Claremont, California.

The plaque is a mold formed square with rounded corners and shallow upturned sides. The light semi-gloss background is a stained crackle glaze that she used extensively in her ceramic work. The back was made with holes which are strung with wire for hanging.

The plaque is in excellent condition. No chips, cracks, surface scratches or rubs.

Jean (Goodwin) Ames (1903-1986) was very much a part of the studio craft movement that began in the 1930s, when she and Arthur Ames created tile mosaics for public buildings commissioned both by the WPA (Public Works of Art program) and Federal Art Project. In 1940, she became the first professor of Drawing & Design at Scripps College in Claremont, California, serving as Chair of the Art Department at the Graduate School from 1962 to 1969, then becoming Professor Emerita in 1969. Upon seeing a post WWII exhibit of Karl Drerup's work at Scripps, both Jean and Arthur Ames were inspired to learn copper enameling. She fully embraced enameling as a new medium for her expression, although she did continue her work in painting, ceramics, and mosaic. In the late 50s she began to design large tapestries, which were created in Aubusson, France. She worked on various other public space commissions in southern California, with some being collaborations with her husband Arthur, and Millard Sheets.

The companion piece to this plaque, as shown in the last photo, is sold.

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WPA Artist Jean Ames Studio Pottery Mid Century Flower Vendor Plaque


  • Vintage item from the 1940s
  • Only ships within United States.
  • Feedback: 152 reviews
  • Favorited by: 13 people