Oregon Pottery Lamp by Wally Schwab
This handsome table lamp was created by internationally known Oregon studio potter Wally Schwab (1932-). Schwab, who has been potting since 1960, has received the prestigious Louis Comfort Tiffany Foundation Grant, won an award in the 2001 World Ceramic Exposition held in South Korea and has shown his work at the Victoria and Albert Museum in London. In his listing in "The Marks Project" online, there is an example of his signature. The listing states that a piece of his pottery is in The Forrest L. Merrill Collection, Dane Cloutier Archives. Merrill’s collection, based in Berkeley, CA, is one of the largest and most important of its kind in the world, containing pieces that span the entire careers of major artists of the 20th and 21st centuries. We've included a photo of Wally Schwab at his potter's wheel.
This oval pottery lamp is not a conversion of a pottery piece to a lamp but was purposely made to be wired. It has a flat top and a base with four small, curved feet. Both top and bottom are covered in a very glossy, dark brown tenmoku glaze. The rest of the lamp is covered in a mustard background glaze with myriad brown specks and blotches. A multitude of branching olive green trees grow up from the base. The pottery body is rippled, lending the trees a sense of motion. There is a brass bulb socket with an on-off turn knob. Shade, harp and finial are not included---we added them for the photos.
The lamp stands 10 inches tall, not including the bulb socket, and measures 8 1/2 inches wide. The 81 inch long brown cord emerges underneath the lamp and extends from a hole at the base on the back. The potter's typical handwritten signature "Schwab" in cursive is inscribed in the clay on the bottom. Weighing a hefty 6 pounds, 6 ounces, this lamp is in excellent condition, a great find from a superbly talented potter.