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Patrick Crabb

Biography to Display: 

1947 Born Shanghai, China

1955 Immigrated to USA


1970 BFA University of Massachusetts, Amherst, Massachusetts

1973 California Standard Teaching Credential, California State College, San Bernardino, California

1976 MFA University of California, Santa Barbara, California

1976 California Community College Teaching Credential, Sacramento, California


1970-1973 USAF Captain, United State Air Force

1970-1974 Adult Education Ceramic Arts Instructor, San Bernardino Unified School District, San Bernardino, California

1975 Teaching Assistant of Ceramic Arts, University of California Santa Barbara, Santa Barbara, California

1979 Ceramic Instructor Heritage Park Arts and Crafts Complex, Irvine, California

1979 Ceramic Instructor, Bowers Museum of Art, Santa Ana, California

1982 Adjunct Professor of Ceramics, Utah State University, Logan, Utah

1982 Adjunct Professor of Ceramics, California State College Fullerton, Fullerton, California

1976-2015 Professor of Ceramic Arts, Santa Ana Community College, Santa Ana, California

2017—Community Teaching, Irvine Fine Arts Center (IFAC), Irvine, California



Patrick Shia Crabb is a sculptor known for his “deconstruction style” tall vessels, large wall platters and figurative sculptures.  Hand building, throwing and the use of unique molds are all used to create his unique forms. Crabb uses a combination of firing techniques including raku, oxidation, cone 06-04 range, low-salt, obvara, sawdust, and other atmospheric firing methods.

Shard vessels and large wall platters are assembled using broken shards of the form. Each shard is fired or glazed individually then reassembled into the original form.  The shards reference antiquity while the bright patterned colors reference contemporary time. This work is vessel form as an art object. Crabb’s travels and experience of primitive cultures of Asia, Africa and South  America have impacted his multi-cultural imageries and colors. Rick Dillingham has influenced his “deconstructed style” shard vessels.  Elements of this body of work and techniques are carried to Crabb’s figurative and architectural forms.

Figurative works stand 4 to 5 feet tall and utilize the same techniques as his vessels and wall platters. Many reflect the broken shard patterns found along the hiking trails of the American Southwest. The large architectural works are not site specific.  They have their origins in meso-America with influences from the Aztec,  Mayan, and Incan cultures and are in the range of 30 inches wide by 36 inches tall.

Crabb is a recipient of numerous awards including the Fulbright Grant Award, issued by the Queen Elizabeth II Arts Council (QEII), New Zealand.

Public Collections

Public Collections to Display: 

Auckland Museum, Auckland, New Zealand

Beijing University, Beijing, China

Bensacola Junior College, Pensacola, Florida

George E. Ohr Cultural Arts Center, Biloxi, Mississippi

International Museum of Ceramics, Faenza, Italy

Kyushu Ceramic Museum, Arita, Japan

Marietta College, Marietta, Ohio

Museum of Modern Ceramics, Castelli, Italy

Scripps College, Claremont, California

Taipei Museum of Fine Arts, Taiwan

Mint Museum, Charlotte, North Carolina

Montclair Art Museum, Montclair, New Jersey 

University of Wisconsin, Platteville, Wisconsin


Bibliography to Display: 

Anderson, Turner. Ceramic Sculpture: Inspiring Techniques. Westerville, OH: American Ceramic Society,2009.

Hopper, Robin. Making Marks: Discovering the Ceramic Surface. Westerville, OH:

Tourtillott, Suzanne J. E. 500 Pitchers: Contemporary Expressions of a Classic Form. New York, NY: Lark Crafts, 2006.

Watkins, James C. and Paul Andrew Wandless. Alternative Kilns & Firing Techniques: Raku, Saggar, Pit, Barrel. New York, NY: Lark Crafts, 2006.




Typical Marks

Patrick S. Crabb signs all of his gallery work with a post-firing numbering system along with his signature.  This number code system has been used since 1978. As an example the number #21195: the final 2 digits, 95, indicate the year the object was made, 1995; the 11 refers to the month of November; the digit 2 refers to the second completed piece in the month of November. Occasionally, a letter is added to this number (for example #21195-P). This letter references a form, in this example, P is for platter at other times the letter T is for teapot.

Bottle-Shard Series
Date: 2010
Materials: Shards, Stoneware
Method: Thrown and Altered, Slab-Built, Mosaic, Hand-Built
Surface Technique: Glaze
Photo: Artist
Photo: Artist
Photo: Artist
Teapot-Shard Series
Date: 2015
Materials: Shards, Stoneware
Method: Thrown and Altered, Mosaic, Hand-Built
Surface Technique: Glaze
Photo: Artist
Mosaic Wall Platter
Materials: Shards, Stoneware
Method: Slab-Built, Mosaic, Hand-Built
Surface Technique: Glaze
Photo: Artist
Photo: Artist
Photo: Artist
Mellow Lady Sculpture
Materials: Shards, Stoneware
Method: Thrown and Altered, Mosaic, Hand-Built
Surface Technique: Glaze
Photo: Artist
Lekana's Temple Sculpture
Materials: Shards, Stoneware
Method: Thrown, Mosaic, Hand-Built
Surface Technique: Glaze
Photo: Artist

Citation: "The Marks Project." Last modified June 23, 2023.