Jim and Nan McKinnell Estate Sale

Jim and Nan McKinnell Ceramic and Fine Art Estate Sale

April 25 - 28, 2013

Arvada Center History Museum


The Arvada Center will host the McKinnell Ceramic and Fine Art Estate Sale on April 25 – 28, 2013. This exhibition and sale of Nan and Jim McKinnell’s personal ceramic and art collection will feature their own work and that of other artists, encompassing a collection of over 1,000 pieces of pottery and art.

The sale begins with an opening reception on Thursday, April 25 from 6:00 – 9:00 p.m. The sale hours are Friday, April 26 and Saturday, April 27 from 10:00 a.m.–7:00 p.m.  and Sunday, April 28 12:00 pm. – 5:00 p.m.  The Thursday reception and 3-day sale are free and open to the public.

View the entire collection for sale  - CLICK HERE


Well-known for their involvement in the ceramic renaissance of the mid-twentieth century, the McKinnell’s were dedicated to creating pots. They were also serious collectors of pottery and art made by talented teachers, students, and friends, many of whom were leaders in the ceramic and art movements of the past 60 years.  In addition to their personal ceramic collection, a newly-revealed and extensive collection of two-dimensional fine art will be on exhibit for the first time.  This exciting group of original paintings, lithographs, and limited-edition prints provides insight into the depth of the McKinnells’ interest in many artistic media. Volumes from their personal library of ceramic and fine art books will also be available. 

View the entire collection for sale  - CLICK HERE

The sale represents a large array of artists including ceramicists Jim and Nan McKinnell, Ken Ferguson, Clary Illian, Sarah Jaeger, Warren MacKenzie and Paul Soldner. Collectors will have the opportunity to purchase two-dimensional artwork from artists such as Rudy Autio, Käthe Kollwitz, Daniel Rhodes and John Sorbie. For a complete list of artists go to: www.mckinnellceramics.com

Not only is this a significant estate sale of art and pottery, it is also a tribute to two of Colorado’s own dear friends and gifted pioneers in the American ceramic movement, Nan and Jim McKinnell. The exhibit offers a special opportunity to own a piece of their historic collection, and to recognize the powerful achievements of two remarkable people and artists. 

The Arvada Center is located at 6901 Wadsworth Blvd. just 2 miles north of the I-70/Wadsworth interchange.  A portion of the proceeds from this sale will benefit the Ceramics program at the Arvada Center and the McKinnell Endowment Fund established by Nan and Jim at Arapahoe Community College.

View the entire collection for sale  - CLICK HERE

McKinnell Ceramic and Fine Art Estate Sale Highlights:

-          Over 300 ceramic works created by Jim and Nan McKinnell.

-          500+ ceramic pieces created by other notable local, regional, and national potters they knew and worked with from the 1960’s to 2000.

-          The “barn find” of over 100 original paintings, etchings, lithographs, and limited edition prints never seen before. Only recently uncovered at the McKinnell home in Ft Collins, all the original 2-D pieces shown have been recently protected with new acid-free mats and shrink wrap to ensure and protect their continued historical value. These works were acquired from the late 1940s to the mid-1990s, from artists and educators working in media other than clay. The McKinnells’ passion for art and understanding of developing art trends is apparent throughout the collection.

-          The McKinnells’ personal collection of teapots.  Known for their passion for drinking tea, they developed a significant collection of over 50 teapots ranging from traditional forms to unique abstractions.

-          Nan’s creations in porcelain jewelry. The pendants on display were finished with Nan’s signature glazing and lusters. At her request, the pieces were completed in collaboration with California jewelry designer Betty Hertzmark. This rare and distinctive small group of jewelry has never been shown before.

-          Jim and Nan’s extensive library of works on art and ceramics, many well-known and some quite unusual. Included are large and beautiful volumes on favorite artists such as Klee, Miro, and Monet, and ceramic classics by Leach, Rhodes, and Zakin. Also available will be the 2003 video CD about the McKinnells, “Time in Tandem.” Along with Nan, Interviewed are pioneers in American ceramics: Ken Ferguson, Wayne Higby, Paul Soldner, Gerry Williams, and Rudy Autio. And orders will be accepted for the new McKinnell biography, forthcoming from the American Museum of Ceramic Art in 2013.

-          A limited selection of Nan and Jim McKinnell signature collectable miniatures plus Wine bottle stoppers, lidded miniature jars etc.