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Tony Marsh

Biography to Display: 

1954 Born New York, New York


1978 BFA California State University, Long Beach, California

1988 MFA New York State College of Ceramics, Alfred University, Alfred, New York


1978-1981 Apprentice, Shimoaka Pottery, Mashiko, Japan


1989— Head of Ceramics Program, Faculty, California State University, Long Beach, California


Tony Marsh is best known for iconic pieces which begin as functional ceramic vessels. He then sets about perforating the form resulting in non-functional, functional vessel forms. Regardless of their uselessness the vessels pay homage to pottery and what it is expected to do, hold, preserve and store.  Marsh often fills the bowls with simple ceramic forms which are also perforated.

The surfaces of the pieces are coated with between 4 and 6 coats of vitreous engobe. Marsh uses soft subtle colors for the containers and their contents; white is the most common color. In a departure from his minimalist mono color vessel forms he created a series of wall pieces. Each piece is composed of many brightly colored pieces. These pieces are enclosed in a frame, not unlike the way children’s colored blocks can be made to fit into their box.


Public Collections to Display: 

Alfred Ceramic Art Museum, Alfred University, Alfred, NY

Arizona State University Art Museum Tempe, Arizona

Cranbrook Museum of Art, Bloomfield Hills, Michigan

Daum Museum of Contemporary Art, Sedalia, Missouri

Foothills Art Center, Golden, Colorado

FoshanMuseum of Contemporary Art, Foshan, China

Gardiner Museum of Ceramic Art, Toronto, Ontario, Canada

Honolulu Museum of Art, Honolulu, Hawai’i

Long Beach Museum of Art, Long Beach, California

Los Angeles County Museum of Art, Los Angeles, California

Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, New York

Minneapolis Institute for the Arts, Minneapolis, Minnesota

Museum of Arts and Design, New York, New York

Museum of Contemporary International Ceramic Art, Incheon, South Korea

Newark Museum, Newark, New Jersey

Oakland Museum of Art, Oakland, California

Racine Art Museum, Racine, Wisconsin

San Jose Museum of Art, San Jose, California

Taipei Ceramics Museum, Taiwan

Takumi Folk Art Gallery, Tokyo, Japan


Bibliography to Display: 

Cavener, Jim. “Exhibition Review,” San Gabriel Valley Weekly, (January 26, 1996).

Clark, Garth. The Artful Teapot. London, England: Thames & Hudson, 2001).

Colby, Joy Hakanson. “Exhibition Review,” The Detroit News, (March 8, 1991).

Del Vecchio, Mark. Postmodern Ceramics. New York, NY: Thames & Hudson, 2001.

Deragon, Rick.  “Tony Marsh,” American Ceramics 11, no. 4 (1995).

Hohenboken, Steve. “Tony Marsh,” The New Art Examiner (Summer 1996).

Lagorio, Irene. “Review,” Monterey Peninsula Herald (August 14, 1983).

Lauria, Jo. “Dialogues in Clay: A Conversation between Tony Marsh & Kurt Weiser,” Ceramics Art and Perception (December 2002).

_____ Jo. Color and Fire – Defining Moments in Studio Ceramics, 1950–2000. New York, NY Los Angeles County Museum of Art, Rizzoli International, 2000.

Lynn, Martha Drexler. Clay Today: Contemporary Ceramists and Their Work. San Francisco, CA: Los Angeles County Museum of Art and Chronicle Books, 1990.

Mansfield, Janet. “Exhibition Review,” Ceramics: Art and Perception (1998).

Marsh, Tony. “Juror’s Statement,” Ceramics Monthly (November 1991).

Melrod, George. "Tony Marsh Profile,” Art Ltd.: West Coast Art + Design (March 2007).

Merino, Tony Dubis. “Tony Marsh’s Puzzling Narratives,” Contact, (Spring 1998).

Peterson, Susan. Contemporary Ceramics. New York: Watson-Guptill Publications, 2000.




The Marks Project is not aware of any signatures or marks for this artist.
Tri-lobed Vessel and Contents (Perforated Vessel Series)
Date: 2002
Form: Sculpture
Materials: Earthenware
Method: Thrown and Altered
Dimensions: H. 6 x W. 12 x D. 12 inches
Surface Technique: Engobe, Overglaze
Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, New York, gift of Mary Burr, 2002.526a-o
Photo: TMP
Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, New York, gift of Mary Burr, 2002.526a-o
Photo: TMP
Untitled (Radiance and Abundant Series)
Form: Sculpture
Method: Thrown and Altered, Assembled, Hand-Built
Surface Technique: Glaze
Courtesy Elaine Levin Archive, University of Southern California
Courtesy Elaine Levin Archive, University of Southern California

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