Scope and Contents
An interview of Fong Chow conducted February 6, 2002, by Margaret Carney, for the Archives of American Art's Nanette L. Laitman Documentation Project for Craft and Decorative Arts in America, at Chow's home, in New York, N.Y.
Scope and Contents
Chow speaks of his family, specifically, his grandfather who was sent to Hartford, Connecticutt, in 1874, for schooling, then studied at Columbia University and returned to China, working as general manager of one of the earliest railroads in north China; the schools Chow attended in Hong Kong; working in different media, including painting and photography; attending the Boston Museum School and then Alfred University; his relationship with Charles Harder, the head of the ceramic design department at Alfred; the "wonderful" teachers at Alfred in the early 1950s, including Katharine Nelson in painting, Marion Fosdick in sculpture, Daniel Rhodes and Ted Randall; learning production methods, as well as "studio potters work"; developing forms, new glazes, and decorations at Glidden Pottery; his "famous" pieces for Glidden Pottery, such as "New Equations" and "Charcoal and Rice"; how he became involved with the Metropolitan Museum of Art and his relationship with Alan Priest, curator of Far Eastern art; working at the Met as a curator for more than 20 years; changes at the Met during his tenure there; and his hiatus from making ceramics while working at the Met. He discusses his return to clay in 1983 and his studio near Cooper Union; he describes visiting his best friend from childhood, Pan He, a sculptor in China. He also discusses his health; his wife Chao-Ling and how they met; his current focus on photography. Chow also recalls Glidden Parker, James Romer, Bo Gyllensvard, Sergio Dello Strologo, Theodore Hobby, Paul Bollardo, Norman Arsenault, and others.