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Maple Vessel

1995 Phil Brown Born: Denver, Colorado 1937 turned, sanded, and varnished maple 7 1/4 x 17 1/8 in. (18.5 x 43.5 cm) diam. Smithsonian American Art Museum Museum purchase through the Renwick Acquisitions Fund 1995.61 Smithsonian American Art Museum
Luce Foundation Center, 4th Floor, 54B

Luce Center Label

Phil Brown typically gives his flared bowls a narrow base to enhance the feeling of lightness and delicacy, as seen in Maple Vessel. To create his pieces, he roughly cuts the shape from a tree trunk or branch. After the wood dries out, he applies a layer of epoxy paint to harden weaker areas and to treat parts of the wood that might contain fungus. Brown then uses a lathe to cut away at the form until it reaches the desired thinness and shape, finishing the piece with varying grades of sandpaper to create a very smooth surface. Brown remembers where and when he found every piece of wood that he turns into a vessel, and notes the wood's source location on the bottom of each of his pieces. (Phil Brown, "How I Turn Green Wood" (Feb. 2007),


decorative arts

Crafts - Wood

wood - maple

About Phil Brown

Born: Denver, Colorado 1937