Object Record

  • Email This Page
  • Send Feedback
Artist Sengel, David
Title Tea Cup
Date 1996
Home Location Mezz., Collection Area - Y1
Material Pearwood, black paint, thorns
Height (in) 3.25
Diameter (in) 5.25
Dimension Details cup: 3h x 3.125 dia and 4 width with handle
saucer: 1h x 5.675
Credit line The Center for Art in Wood Museum Collection, Donated by the Artist
Accession Number 2000.12.30.001G
Object ID Number 2000.12.30.001
Object Number OBJ 397
Category 8: Communication Artifact
Signed Name Sengel
Sig Loc Engraved on bottom fo the cup and saucer
Inscription Text Engraved: Sengel '96
Notes A similar one was exhibited in Wood Turning in North America Since 1930

Glenn Adamson with Albert LeCoff
David Sengel's Tea Cup is an interesting counterpoint to Merryll Saylan's nearly contemporary Tea Set. (see fig. ) Like Saylan, Sengel has transformed the everyday, familiar tea cup into a deeply emotional object. But while Saylan has emphasized the warmth and peacefulness of tea as a domestic ritual, Sengel's cup is dark and disturbing. Thorns bristle from the areas of the piece that are touched most often, the handle, lip and saucer brim. The sense of menace is augmented by an unrelieved coating of black matte paint. Yet the Tea Cup can also be seen as having more ambiguous spiritual and personal overtones. The thorns, sent to him by fellow turner Robyn Horn, remind one of Christ on the cross and may have been inspired by Sengel's father, who is a Presbyterian Minister. In this light, the untouchable cup may be seen as a deeply felt image of loss, or perhaps a symbol of personal sacrifice.
Sub-category Art