Axel Salto: Master of Stoneware
Susanne Bruhn & Pia Wirnfeldt
Clay Museum of Ceramik Art Denmark, 2018
out of stock
Axel Salto is one of the most celebrated ceramists of the 20th century, due to his internationally recognised style and interpretation of nature in his designs. Many of his works are held in collections at a number of notable institutions, including the V&A and the Metropolitan Museum of Art. Educated at the Royal Danish Academy of Fine Arts, he began his career as a painter, but developed an eye for ceramics after Bing and Grondahl approached him to produce his designs in 1925 for the World Exposition in Paris. Prior to his ceramic work, Salto worked alongside other contemporaries on the journal Klingen, one of the driving forces for modernism in Denmark. The inspiration for the journal came from a trip to Paris, where he socialised with the likes of Matisse and Picasso.
His early work was inspired by greek mythology and demonic iconography, while his later pieces turned to more organic forms, such as seedpods, budding flowers or fruit. Rather than encapsulating the whole form, he would focus on specific details. These forms helped to reveal the depth of the glaze as it flowed between the crevices of the piece. His ceramic works contain three main styles; ‘the core of power’, ‘the budding’ and ‘the sprouting style’, with the addition of unusually rich glazes that demonstrated his passion for Chinese precedents. His style is opposed to the functional aesthetic of so many of his contemporaries and successors, and was therefore highly respected amongst the international design community.
Published on the occasion of the exhibition Axel Salto: Master of Stoneware at CLAY Museum of Ceramic Art Denmark, 25 February – 17 September 2017.