Egyptian Teapot Commission for Kamm Teapot Foundation (2010-12)

In January 2012, I completed my second commission for the respected Kamm Teapot Foundation Collection.  (See also Water and Fish (Series: Water Ways).)  This project is the largest, in terms of beaded surface area, that I yet have attempted.  Although not truly usable to serve tea, the Egyptian Teapot was required to have all the elements of a teapot: a handle, a spout, a lid, etc.  As is true of many of my sculptures, the work was a collaborative one.  I was responsible for the design and completion of all of the beadwork, and the bulk of the woodworking was executed by my husband, Lindsay Grigsby.  In the case of this sculpture, special assistance with the face carving was provided by local Pennsylvania craftsman, Fred Hoover.

Egyptian Teapot (Beadwork sculpture)Egyptian teapot (beadwork sculpture)

Egyptian Teapot
Glass and metal seed beads and tube beads, wood, thread, paint
H:  17″; W: 16 3/4″; D: 13″

Exhibited (kindly lent by the owner): Loan exhibition. Private Thoughts: Beadwork Sculpture by Leslie Grigsby for the New York Ceramics & Glass Fair, NYC (January 18 [preview] through 22, 2017).

Published: Suzanne Golden Presents: 35 Artists Innovate with Beads by Lark Books (Sterling Publishing, NYC), April 2013, p. 94.

The Kamm Teapot Foundation Collection, Statesville, NC

Below, see the work when it was in progress:

1) Wood carving and initial construction.  The partially constructed front shows penciled details.  Lindsay begins to refine the overall teapot carcass shape (about 16 1/2″ in height).


2)  The teapot is disassembled to facilitate design layout and painting of the face.  The face is selectively pierced, for beading.


3)  As Lindsay refines other aspects of the shape, I finally can begin beading.  Below, the face and eyes are beaded in peyote stitch; the headdress sides are in square stitch, facilitating clean-edged horizontal rows.


4) Below, is the front half of the pot with the necklace shown in ladder stitch, with bugle and seed beads.  The white “dress” and forehead of the headdress are peyote-stitched in seed beads.  The separate elements–shoulders, headdress sides, and head–are laid upon one another, but not quite ready for attachment, and the edges remain unfinishedThe hole for the cobra-spout is centered on the forehead.

5) The below display the next phases of the project, reflecting many months of beading and some pretty tricky assembly work.

Egyptian teapot snake detailEgyptian teapot front

Egyptian teapot epaulet

6) …and at long last, the finished sculpture.

1 Response to “Egyptian Teapot”

  1. December 28, 2013 at 5:11 am

    Such a pleasure to meet you today and also know that you are from Delaware! Your work is truly amazing and
    I would love to feature a piece or more whenever you had something extra you would like to show. I am sure you must be so busy with this time consuming art but if you’d ever like a western venue, then please contact me about it! I meant to ask, is the koi that was living in the back pond still around? He/she was so inviting and affectionate! I bet it’s been 10 years since we last visited! Thank you! Enjoy the rest of your vacation!

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