MUIR VESSEL ACQUIRED BY TOLEDO MUSEUM OF ART
Work by award-winning metalsmith Thomas Muir, Distinguished Artist Professor, has been shown around the world, featured in a number of books and magazines, and is collected in museums and by private owners. Muir is highly regarded both for his art and his craft, particularly in hollowware. He blends the functional with the aesthetic, often using human anatomy as a reference — a hand might serve as a teapot or infuser, for instance.
|“Cycladic Figure Impregnated,”
by Thomas Muir
Now his work can be found closer to home, in the Toledo Museum of Art. The museum recently purchased “Cycladic Figure Impregnated,” a coffee server made by Muir in 1987. It is the second in a series he created between the mid-1980s and ’90s; the first is in the Art Institute of Chicago. They are Muir’s interpretation of that most ancient and basic of forms, the vessel, and combine his playful perspective and intense attachment to and fascination with natural history.
The series also represents a turning point in his work, Muir said, as the first in which he uses a direct reference to historical artworks, in this case the Cycladic figures in the Indiana University Art Museum and the Metropolitan Museum of Art. Vessels and sculptures from this Greek regional civilization dating back to before 3200 B.C. often referred to the female form and tended to maintain harmony of parts and attention to proportion.