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Theatre of Tragic

Threatre of Tragic Container Small Photo
Ah, the Theatre of Tragic. This is the only piece that was specifically designed to be made into a ceramic dish. It's supposed to represent a theater mask...get it? If I had to guess, I'd say the idea for this actually came from the flyer I made for the Wyandotte, Michigan Jaycees movie-themed haunted house in 1994. I wanted to try and brand that haunted house so I used a little drawing representing the traditional two theater masks - One was happily nasty-looking and the other was sadly horrified at its decaying state. So that's probably how this came about. (I don't recall exactly, but it seems like a logical guess.)

The name for this piece came from a pinball game. No kidding. There is a game out there that I really liked called Theater of Magic. I'm not quite sure why I chose to use the English spelling of the word theater. You might suggest that this was to imbue the piece with a touch of class...until you looked at the product squarely.

In keeping with what was most likely its inspiration, I made the left face look vicious and the right terrified. The primary reason for coming up with this design was to create a food dish that had two containers inside of it. I intentionally painted the left face in reds and oranges to suggest "hot" and the right face in blues and pale peaches to imply "cold". My basic concept here was that you could use it at a holiday party. MIld salsa could go into the blue one and spicy salsa in the red one. Or low fat candy could occupy the blue one and fattening chocolate the red one. You get the idea.

Sadly, once we had created the plaster molds, we found that the Theatre of Tragic was very hard to get a good ceramic cast from. I think this was due in large part to the size and shape of the piece. I probably one of every three I cast. This would have made it an expensive one to create.

Theatre of Tragic Photo Selection Strip Click the images above to view photos of this prop in the window.