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Merfrog and her Pet Fish

1979 David Gilhooly Born: Auburn, California 1943 Died: Newport, Oregon 2013 white earthenware and glazes 7 x 6 x 7 3/8 in. (17.8 x 15.2 x 18.7 cm) Smithsonian American Art Museum Gift of Helen Williams Drutt English and H. Peter Stern in honor of the 35th anniversary of the Renwick Gallery 2007.47.12 Smithsonian American Art Museum
Luce Foundation Center, 4th Floor, 53A


Luce Center Label

David Gilhooly made his first ceramic frog during a friendly mug-making competition among classmates at the University of California–Davis. This inspired the artist to create a whole civilization composed entirely of frogs, ranging from Napoleon-inspired frog busts to frog-Egyptian gods. Gilhooly originally thought about making pigs, but decided not to, stating: "The trouble with making a PigWorld rather than the FrogWorld was that pigs are 'loaded.' That is, people have a lot of negative ideas that are attached to pigs...." In Merfrog and her Pet Fish, Gilhooly refers to one of his favorite themes, fertility, by creating an absurdly voluptuous frog surrounded by devoted singing companions. (Artist's website, www.davidgilhooly.com, January 2006)

Keywords

decorative arts - ceramic

Crafts - Clay

About David Gilhooly

Born: Auburn, California 1943 Died: Newport, Oregon 2013

More works in the collection by
David Gilhooly