Grotell, Maija

Grotell, Maija

(1899–1973) ceramist; born in Helsinki, Finland. In 1927 she emigrated to New York to teach pottery. In 1938 she began some 30 years as head of the ceramics department at Cranbrook Academy of Art near Detroit, and was regarded as an innovative and gifted teacher, as well as a pioneer in glaze technology. Her own works, ever experimental, ranging from simple vessels with art deco motifs to later ones with craterous glazes, brought her 25 major awards and acclaim as the "mother of American ceramics."
The Cambridge Dictionary of American Biography, by John S. Bowman. Copyright © Cambridge University Press 1995. Reproduced with permission.