Robert Johnson collection of Frans Wildenhain ceramics

RIT Art Collection

Table of Contents

Collection Overview
Biographical Information for Frans Wildenhain and Robert Johnson
Scope and Content
Subject Headings
Information for Researchers
Administrative Information
Related Materials

Collection Overview (Collapse)

Robert Johnson collection of  Frans Wildenhain ceramics
Johnson, Robert Bradley
Inclusive Date(s)
circa 1955-1975
Robert Johnson collection of Frans Wildenhain ceramics contains 331 pieces, each collected by Johnson.
331.0 Item(s) (Bowls, Pots, Vases, Tiles, Jars, Sculptures, Vessels, etc.)
Dimensions note
Ceramic pieces vary in size: .5 x 8 to 43 x 16 inches
RIT Art Collection
C.S. North, Shelf 235
RIT Archive Collections
RIT Libraries
Wallace Center
90 Lomb Memorial Drive
Rochester, New York, 14623
(585) 475-2557

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Biographical Information for Frans Wildenhain and Robert Johnson (Collapse)

About Frans Wildenhain

German born potter Frans Wildenhain joined the faculty at the School for American Crafts in 1950 where, along with Hobart Cowles, he helped create the legendary ceramics program. Wildenhain was trained at the Bauhaus with such giants as Josef Albers, Paul Klee, and Lazlo Moholy-Nagy. In addition to more traditional forms of pottery, Wildenhain created large ceramic murals for display in public spaces, such as the wall in the lobby of RIT’s Ingle Auditorium.

About Robert Johnson

Robert Bradley Johnson graduated from Rensselaer Polytechnic and moved to Rochester, New York in 1954 to work at Eastman Kodak. He purchased his first Wildenhain pieces from Shop One to furnish his new home, "...a couple of his lamps, a tea caddy, a few bowls, enough to fill all the corners." 1 That was in 1955. Johnson continued collecting Wildenhain's work, and his collection eventually totaled some 331 pieces, 300 of which he donated to the RIT Art Collection in 2010.

1 "RIT Archives Acquires Frans Wildenhain Ceramic Collection," by Marcia Morphy. University News, August 17, 2010.

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Scope and Content (Collapse)

This is a collection of mid-twentieth century ceramics, circa 1940-1970, created by Frans Wildenhain (1905-1980). These were collected beginning in 1955 by Robert Johnson. The collection contains various types of pieces including bowls, pots, vases, tiles, jars, sculptures, and vessels.

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Arrangement (Collapse)

Ceramic pieces are stored individually.

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Subject Headings (Collapse)

Personal Name(s)

  • Johnson, Robert Bradley
  • Wildenhain, Frans, 1905-

Corporate Name(s)

  • Rochester Institute of Technology -- Art collections.
  • Rochester Institute of Technology -- Faculty.
  • Rochester Institute of Technology. School for American Craftsmen.
  • Shop One (Rochester, N.Y.).


  • Ceramicists


  • Ceramics -- New York (State) -- Rochester -- 20th century


  • Ceramics (objects)

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Information for Researchers (Collapse)

Preferred Citation

Robert Johnson collection of Frans Wildenhain ceramics, RIT Archive Collections

Restrictions on Access

This collection is open to researchers.

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Administrative Information (Collapse)

Collection ID


Accession Information

Accession number(s): 10:67

Source of Acquisition

Bob Johnson gifted his collection of Frans Wildenhain ceramics to the RIT Art Collection in July 2010.

Processing Information

Finding aid created by Amy Vilz in August 2011.

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Related Materials (Collapse)

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