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Perpetual Motion

ca. 1970 Beatrice Wood Born: San Francisco, California 1893 Died: Ojai, California 1998 glazed earthenware 19 1/4 x 13 1/2 x 14 3/4 in. (49.0 x 34.3 x 37.5 cm) Smithsonian American Art Museum Gift of George C. Zachary in memory of Devlin Mario Archie © 1970, Radha R. Sloss, Conservator for Beatrice Wood 1994.104 Smithsonian American Art Museum
Luce Foundation Center, 4th Floor, 53B


Luce Center Quote

“I make naughty figures to laugh and comment on this funny world in which we are caught.” Beatrice Wood, quoted in the exhibition catalogue for Intimate Appeal: The Figurative Art of Beatrice Wood, 1989

Luce Center Label

Beatrice Wood began to create sculptures like this woman in the early 1970s, calling them “sophisticated primitives.” She intended for these sculptures to appear humorous, and used them to reflect her feelings about society, human behavior, and gender relationships. The woman, presumably a prostitute, happily sits on a chair wearing an oversized hat and a strapless dress that reveals her slip at the bottom. Wood often said that she would make figural sculptures such as Perpetual Motion in order to take a refreshing break from making pots.

Keywords

Dress - accessory - hat

Figure female - full length

Object - furniture - chair

decorative arts - ceramic

Crafts - Clay

ceramic - earthenware

About Beatrice Wood

Born: San Francisco, California 1893 Died: Ojai, California 1998

More works in the collection by
Beatrice Wood