Vessel #453

Media - 1998.131 - SAAM-1998.131_1 - 57664
Copied Max Krimmel, Vessel #453, 1997, lathe-turned Colorado alabaster with satine (bloodwood), 8 1216 in. (21.640.6 cm) diam., Smithsonian American Art Museum, Gift of the Krimmel Family, 1998.131

Artwork Details

Vessel #453
8 1216 in. (21.640.6 cm) diam.
base bottom incised: Max Krimmel/#453
Credit Line
Gift of the Krimmel Family
Mediums Description
lathe-turned Colorado alabaster with satine (bloodwood)
Object Number

Artwork Description

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.

Luce Object 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