Peter Deneen

Peter Jerome Deneen was born in 1948 and graduated from Luther College in 1970 with a B.A. in art. He continued his studies at the University of Northern Iowa, Cedar Falls, earning his M.A. in 1971. While still at Luther, he began to study and work with Marguerite Wildenhain at her Pond Farm Studio. That association continued from 1968-1978. In 1972 he and his wife Mary, also a potter, founded Deneen Pottery, incorporated under Cloth & Clay, Inc., a family-owned and operated business located in St. Paul, Minnesota. The goal of Deneen Pottery is to provide “exceptional, handcrafted, stoneware to clients.” The business “has developed through several locations and creative specialties, both retail and wholesale, to emerge as the premier producer of custom logo stoneware.” The work produced by Deneen Pottery is influenced by the Bauhaus desire to integrate art and industry in the filed of mass production. One of the identifying characteristics of the work produced by Deneen Pottery is a unique glaze process that helps establish brand identity. According to the company website "Glaze Engraving"™ is an exclusive process in which original studio art is cut directly into the clay and filled with glaze, achieving a distinctive detailed image. The process was developed by Peter Deneen, assisted by artist David Christofferson. David is an illustrator, metal smith, and boat builder. His talents in drawing, three dimensional work, and attention to detail are all part of the "Glaze Engraved"™ quality product. The process of hand making pottery is time consuming and labor intensive. Twenty-four pairs of hands will touch each piece during its production until it is ready to be shipped. While each piece is uniform in size and shape, every one is created by hand, making it unique. A customized "Glaze Engraved Emblem" TM truly makes a statement of quality and craftsmanship.” There is one work by Peter Deneen in the Luther College Fine Arts Collection, a wheel-thrown stoneware vessel that was included in the exhibition, RIPPLES: Marguerite Wildenhain and Her Pond Farm Students. The RIPPLES exhibit was curated by Billie Sessions and during 2002 it traveled to the Robert V. Fullerton Art Museum at California State University in San Bernardino, California; the Nora Eccles Art Museum at Utah State University, Logan, Utah; and The Schein-Joseph International Museum of Ceramic Art at Alfred University in Alfred, New York. When the exhibit tour ended, several of the participating artists, including Deneen, donated their work to the Luther College Fine Arts Collection. Those donations provided the core of the Pond Farm Collection at Luther College.
Source of Biography; Ripples: Marguerite Wildenhain and her Pond Farm Students. Curated by Billie Sessions. San Bernardino, CA: California State University, 2002; Pond Farm Collection: Works of Art Created by Students Who Studied with Marguerite Wildenhain at her Pond Farm Studio. Text by Jane Kemp. Decorah, IA: Luther College, 2003