|Death Date: 2014
|John Fassbinder was born on August 6, 1931 in Washington State. He earned his Bachelor’s degree in art at the University of Washington in Seattle where he studied with Robert Sperry and Paul Bonifas, pioneers in the American Studio Craft movement. He earned his MFA in ceramics at Claremont Graduate School in 1960.
He taught at Central Washington College and then, in 1963, was hired as an art instructor at Chouinard Art School. It was there that he taught ceramics, drawing, and painting, and served as Assistant Chairman of the Ceramics Department. Later, Fassbinder would move on to teach ceramics and drawing for 11 years at Pomona College. He also taught at Scripps College and was a part-time faculty member at Citrus Community College for several years.
Known for his beautiful and original ceramics, Fassbinder rented a studio on Baseline Road in Claremont. Working with traditional materials and techniques, he fashioned works of art that were uniquely distinctive and utilitarian. He found inspiration in nature and used Chinese style painting to decorate his pieces with oxide. It was this interest in painting that made his pieces entirely distinctive. He turned out a never-ending array of housewares like vases, jugs, goblets, plates and pitchers, all imprinted with his signature. He favored vivid glazes and decorations both abstract and figurative. His pieces can be found in museum collections nationwide.