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Description - The Potter's Art by Garth Clark

This authoritative and beautiful book is the first to provide a comprehensive overview of British pottery. Focusing on four types - the peasant, the industrial, the artist and the studio potter - the author traces the story from the rudimentary pots of the Middle Ages to the sophisticated work of modern studio potters, always emphasizing the changing social conditions that have spurred development. This book traces the history of British pottery from the rudimentary and functional pots of the Middle Ages to the intellectually ambitious art of today's studio potters. Garth Clark, a noted ceramic authority, brings the potters to life by describing their working conditions, status, lifestyle, identity and the contribution each has made to an ever-changing and advancing tradition. Divided into four parts - one for each of the four different kinds of makers who have successively created British ceramics throughout history - the book concentrates on peasant, industrial, artist and studio potters. With simple slipware and purely practical pots, pottery in Britain was initially the laggard among the ceramic arts of Europe until the rise of industry in the seventeenth century brought about the rapid sophistication of the craft. During the two centuries that followed, Britain revolutionized the manner in which pottery was made, distributed and sold, and emerged as Europe's ceramic leader, with Josiah Wedgwood playing a key role. In the late nineteenth century artist-potters such as William de Morgan and the Martin brothers were able to capitalize on these technical developments, producing exuberantly decorated work which became a vehicle for individual expression. More recently the mantle has passed to the studio potter, and the calm lines of Bernard Leach and Lucy Rie predominate. Although the future direction of ceramics is unclear, Garth Clark shows in his discussion of contemporary potters that the possibilities are both exciting and diverse. For collectors, teachers, students, potters and pottery enthusiasts, this is an important survey which sheds new light on the fascinating history of British pottery and speculates thought-provokingly on how the craft will develop. With its magnificent colour photography and wealth of new and lively information presented in a highly readable and engaging style, it will prove to be an invaluable addition to any library.

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Book Details

ISBN: 9780714843889
ISBN-10: 0714843881
Format: Paperback
(290mm x 250mm x mm)
Pages: 240
Imprint: Phaidon Press Ltd
Publisher: Phaidon Press Ltd
Publish Date: 1-Feb-2004
Country of Publication: United Kingdom

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Author Biography - Garth Clark

Garth Clark is the author of eight books and more than 100 essays, reviews and articles on modern ceramics. He founded the Institute for Ceramic History in 1979, and has lectured on ceramics at universities and museums throughout the USA, Canada and Europe. He directs two galleries, one in New York, the other in Los Angeles, that specialize in modern and contemporary ceramic art.

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