Southeast Asian Pottery

Charles and Lucy Voris Baird Collection of Asian Art

About the Collection

The Charles and Lucy Voris Baird Collection of Asian Art was donated to The University of Akron in 1939 by Betsy Baird Neville. The nearly 200 pieces were originally housed in the art school. Over the years, the collection spent time at the Akron Art Museum, Hower House Museum, and Myers School of Art before being transferred to the Institute for educational use in hands-on education for UA students and the community. Pieces were collected in modern-day Thailand, with some pieces from China and Japan, by Mrs. Neville when her husband Edwin served as U.S. Ambassador to Thailand from 1937-1940. The collection bears the name of Mrs. Neville’s parents who graduated from Buchtel College in 1878. Before the transfer to the Institute, the collection was last on exhibit in 1984.


The Baird Collection is currently on display in the Institute galleries in the ongoing exhibit East to West. The exhibit was designed and installed by students in the Museums and Archives Studies and Public Humanities Certificate Programs. It features numerous artworks from the Baird Collection, including 13th - 15th century Thai pottery, Japanese prints by the masters Hiroshige and Hokusai, Japanese leather shadow puppets, and blue and white Chinese porcelain from the Ming and Qing dynasties. Through these pieces, the exhibit seeks to rebuild the fragmented history of this collection.

Learn more about East to West.

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