The Alchemy of June Schwarcz: Enamel Vessels from the Forrest L. Merrill Collection

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© Courtesy of the Artist and Craft and Folk Art Museum
The Alchemy of June Schwarcz: Enamel Vessels from the Forrest L. Merrill Collection

5814 Wilshire Blvd.
Los Angeles, CA 90036
September 25th, 2011 - January 8th, 2012
Opening: September 25th, 2011 6:00 PM - 9:00 PM

Tue - Fri 10-5, Sat & Sun 12-6
Regular Admission: Admission - Members: FREE; General: $7; Students and Seniors: $5; Children under 10: FREE; First Wednesday of every month FREE -- Reception Admission: $10 (RSVP Requested)


Opening Reception
Saturday, September 24 | 6pm – 9pm
$10 | CAFAM Members FREE
Please RSVP to 323.937.4230 x50 of

This is a career-spanning exhibition showcasing the work of legendary metalworker and enamellist June Schwarcz. The Alchemy of June Schwarcz: Enamel Vessels from the Forrest L. Merrill Collection provides an in-depth examination of one of the artists included in Golden State of Craft. Like taking a magnifying glass to a single cell and uncovering a hidden universe, this exhibition will highlight the extensive career of one of California’s living treasures.

June Schwarcz (b. 1918) is a metalworker whose arena is enamel. Born in Denver, she studied writing at the University of Colorado and then at the University of Chicago. Fearless and innovative, Schwarcz has spent the last 57 years transforming gold, silver, and copper into uniquely exquisite forms through her experimental manipulation of materials and processes.

Along with enameling—the fusing of colored glass to metal under high temperatures—Schwarcz pleats, sews, pierces and hammers metal to produce complex and intricately fabricated pieces that characterize the unique artistry of her work. Her distinctive forms also arise from her frequent use of thin copper foil and mesh. She is in the collections of the Museum of Arts and Design, the Renwick Gallery, and the Museum of Applied Arts in Zurich, among others. At 92, she continues to produce new work and has garnered official recognition as a Living Treasure of California by the California State Assembly. 

The craft collection of Forrest L. Merrill is focused on post World War II contemporary objects made of clay, wood, enamel, fiber, metal, and glass. Merrill’s collection—which includes several thousand works—is one of the largest and most important of its kind in the country.


About Pacific Standard Time: Art in L.A. 1945 – 1980
Pacific Standard Time is a collaboration of more than sixty cultural institutions across Southern California, coming together for six months beginning in October 2011 to tell the story of the birth of the Los Angeles art scene and how it became a major new force in the art world. Each institution will make its own contribution to this grand-scale story of artistic innovation and social change, told through a multitude of simultaneous exhibitions and programs. Exploring and celebrating the significance of the crucial post-World War II years through the tumultuous period of the 1960s and 70s, Pacific Standard Time encompasses developments from L.A. Pop to post-minimalism; from modernist architecture and design to multi-media installations; from the films of the African American L.A. Rebellion to the feminist activities of the Woman’s Building; from ceramics to Chicano performance art; and from Japanese American design to the pioneering work of artists’ collectives.

Initiated through $10 million in grants from the Getty Foundation, Pacific Standard Time involves cultural institutions of every size and character across Southern California, from Greater Los Angeles to San Diego and Santa Barbara to Palm Springs.