search  current discussion  categories  glazes - cone 04-06 

viktor schreckengost 1906-2008

updated mon 18 feb 08


vpitelka on sat 16 feb 08

Donald -
Thanks for posting this. It's sad news, but he certainly lived a full life.
I first found out about Schreckengost when I was in grad school in the mid
80s and saw some of his "jazz" bowls in the Everson Museum in Syracuse and
in other museum collections in the Northeast. But the discovery that made
me put him up there near the top of my own list of American ceramic artists
was a 1942 Schreckengost sculpture I saw in the Renwick collection at the
Smithsonian in Washington DC. It was titled "Apocalypse," and it was a
caricature of four figures - Hitler, Death, Hirohito, and Mussolini, riding
the Beast of the Apocalypse." If you do Google Images for "Schreckengost
Apocalypse" you can find images of it.

In addition to his amazing pottery and sculpture, he was of course an
extraordinarily productive industrial and product designer. As stated in
the obit in the Cleveland Plain Dealer, "Schreckengost's output as a
designer was immense. His products included pedal cars, printing presses,
stoves, refrigerators, collators, machine tools, riding lawn mowers, lawn
furniture, tractors, dinnerware, toys, streetlights, broadcast equipment,
gearshift consoles, flashlights, theater costumes, stage sets, artificial
limbs, typesetting machines, coffins, calendars, chairs, electric fans,
lenses, logos, ball gowns and baby walkers. "Chances are that almost every
adult in America has ridden in, drunk out of, eaten off of, mowed their
lawns with, sat on, placed a call with, lit the night with, hid their hooch
in or had an arm or leg replaced with something created by Viktor

It would behoove everyone to spend some time perusing the websites that
Donald so thoughtfully provided. I have no doubt that history will elevate
Victor Schreckengost to his rightful position as a superstar of American art
and design.
- Vince

Vince Pitelka
Appalachian Center for Craft
Tennessee Tech University;

Donald Burroughs on sat 16 feb 08

On Jan.26,2008 Viktor Schreckengost industrial designer(and potter) at 101.
This tribute has a bit of wry humour in it:

What a fascinating life...of course... he was born of potters.

Donald Burroughs