Katherine Choy is remembered among national craft audiences mostly for her 1957 founding of the Clay Art Center in Port Chester, New York, which still operates in her honor fostering a community around the practice of ceramic arts. In New Orleans, Katherine Choy is remembered in the artistic community thanks to her leadership of the heralded ceramics program at Newcomb College (Tulane) from 1952 to 1957.  This exhibition in NOMA’s Elise M. Besthoff Charitable Trust Gallery will be the first presentation of Choy’s extraordinary work in Louisiana since the artist’s friends mounted the Katherine Choy Memorial Show in 1959. Many of these artists have held Choy pots with reverence, lending some for the NOMA exhibition.

The accompanying catalog A Radical Potter in 1950s New Orleans looks comprehensively at Katherine Choy’s biography, her network of teachers, students, and colleagues, her award-winning ceramics, and her merging of artistic expression with handcraft in the mid-1950s. The catalog leans heavily on period sources to substantiate the first monograph of the short but fervent life of a promising cross-disciplinarian artist gone too soon, but having already asserted her singular voice in changing what expressive ceramics would contribute to the art world.

Katherine Choy at a Kiln in New Orleans

1952–53

Jack Robinson

Photograph

Photo courtesy www.robinsonarchive.com

Double Spout Vase

1952–57

Katherine Choy

Gift of Evelyn Witherspoon