By Crocker Staff

If you haven’t explored Exuberant Earth: Ceramics by Ruth Rippon yet, now’s the time! There’s something for everyone in this exhibition that spans four decades of styles, trends, and techniques.

“This was all done by one person?” is frequently overheard in the gallery, and to answer that question: Yes.

The pioneer ceramist Ruth Rippon has infused her unquestionable skill and versatility with humor, history, and humanity. While Rippon’s exemplary art was key in shifting the perception of ceramics from crafts to fine art, her body of work is anything but stuffy. Take a peep at Fifi, laugh at Rippon’s playful poke at Toulouse Lautrec, marvel at her beautiful bowls and plates, or test your knowledge of first ladies with her First Ladies Blocks. From Lollies and her beloved fish to cheeky Europa astride the infamous bull, we dare any visitor not to find something that speaks to them.

Exuberant Earth will be leaving February 4th, so find your favorite piece soon.

“The response to Exuberant Earth has been so upbeat. I think one reason for this is that Ruth was such a versatile artist. People enter the gallery and are often surprised to see such a wide variety of styles, techniques, and subject matter. At the same time, Ruth has a joie de vivre that is evident in her work, and I think visitors can sense that positivity—it’s contagious.” -

Kristina Perea Gilmore
Associate Curator

Ruth Rippon, Fabulous Fifi and her Fan (Peep Show Series), 1970s. Stoneware, glaze and lustres, 5 x 5 12 3/4 in. Collection of Anne and Malcolm McHenry.

Interested in learning more? Check out these exhibition-related programs:

Theatre + Art: Play with Clay
January 7, 2018
1 – 3 PM
Designed for families with youth ages 7 and older, all participants have an opportunity to learn and grow together as they explore fine and performing art forms. Families will discover the Crocker’s permanent collection of ceramics and explore the process of hand building with air-dry clay. Later, Circa’s acrobats, singers, and musicians will delight everyone with a circus-themed escapade at the Mondavi Center. Transportation is not provided.

Material Explosion
January 13, 2018
10:30 AM – 12:30 PM
Make a clay sculpture inspired by Ruth Rippon. Designed for children ages 7–12 with busy schedules, enroll your child in this session, or several sessions of our winter Material Explosion series. In each session, students will bring an artwork to conclusion, ready to take home.

Top Image; Ruth Rippon, Bowl, 1970s. Stoneware, majolica, 3 1/2 x 18 1/2 in. Collection of Alfred and Candy Holland.