Dod Stewart – Collector and Art Patron – Passes Away
George “Dod” Stewart, known to many in the art pottery world and a familiar face at every one of the 28 Grove Park Inn Arts and Crafts Conferences, passed away on Friday, July 17, at the age of 67. Funeral services were held on Thursday, July 23, at the Honaker Funeral Home in Slidell, LA.
While Dod was known to many of his Southern friends as both an artist and a patron of the arts, he will best be remembered by so many of us for his dedication to the further recognition of Shearwater Pottery. Founded in 1928 by artist Walter Anderson and his son Peter Anderson in Ocean Springs, Mississippi, Shearwater Pottery soon became a family legacy, as Peter Anderson was joined by two of his brothers, and later by the next generation of Anderson potters and decorators.
Dod became an avid collector of Shearwater art pottery, figurines, and art tiles (pictured), but did not stop there. He often spoke before groups, provided information for several books, and generously loaned pieces from his personal collection to museums. Most recently his collection was the core for the 2014 exhibition “The Walter Anderson Family Legacy: Shearwater Pottery,” held on the campus of Dod’s alma mater, the University of Louisiana, whose faculty recognized Dod as “a scholar and prolific collector of ceramic ware.”
In 2006, as evidence of Dod’s dedication and scholarship, he privately published his own research in a book entitled “Shearwater Pottery,” copies of which are cherished by his friends and fellow collectors.
Brad Clark, longtime Arts and Crafts Conference attendee, remarked, “I always looked forward to having a chat with Dod and seeing his smiling face at the Arts and Crafts Conference and various pottery events. His Southern hospitality and encyclopedic knowledge will be missed.”
Close friends Patti Bourgeois and Don Gill added, “To Dod’s family and friends, we share your deep sorrow. Dod was the quintessential Southern gentleman. We have been friends for many years, and we feel so privileged to have just been with Dod in Zanesville, Ohio just ten days ago. We will miss his friendship, and his warm and genuine manner. He was a wonderful man and a friend to so many in the pottery community. We learned so much from him. We will remember his warmth, wit and his charm forever. Godspeed, Dod, with our deepest affection.”
On a personal note, in 1988, when I was making preparations for the first Arts and Crafts Conference at the Grove Park Inn in Asheville, North Carolina, Dod contacted me from his home in Louisiana and gave me his unqualified support for, as he put it, “bringing the Arts and Crafts world back to the South.” Despite the severe limitations and challenges his illness brought him, in the 28 years since then, Dod never missed a single conference, meeting friends and fellow collectors in his booth even while confined to his wheelchair.
For additional information, please visit www.honakerforestlawn.com, as well as to sign the family’s guestbook. Arrangements have been made by Honaker Funeral Home in Slidell, LA.