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Vessel #453

1997 Max Krimmel Born: Bellefonte, Pennsylvania 1948 lathe-turned Colorado alabaster with satine (bloodwood) 8 1/2 x 16 in. (21.6 x 40.6 cm) diam. Smithsonian American Art Museum Gift of the Krimmel Family 1998.131 Smithsonian American Art Museum
Luce Foundation Center, 4th Floor, 52B

Luce Center Quote

“Turning rocks is tricky, but that just adds to the fun. And delicately colored stones like alabaster, when turned, develop a pleasant translucent glow.” Max Krimmel, “Alabaster on the Lathe,” no date

Luce Center Label

Max Krimmel’s process involves roughing out the rock with an air chisel, then using carbide-tipped scrapers and finer tools for the actual turning. The thin rim of bloodwood, added to the piece before the final polishing, accents the soft colors of the stone and the thinness of the alabaster, which is often less than 3/16 of an inch thick. Krimmel’s alabaster is so fragile that it often shatters on the lathe, and the artist is resigned to losing as many as twenty percent of his pieces this way.


decorative arts

Crafts - Stone

stone - alabaster

wood - satine

About Max Krimmel

Born: Bellefonte, Pennsylvania 1948