pottery

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Pottery of Precision
Lucy Martin Lewis learned to make pottery from her great-Aunt and other women living in Sky City, a remote three hundred foot high sandstone mesa in Acoma Pueblo, New Mexico. Until the middle of the twentieth century, the community had no plumbing and pottery jars were necessary for hauling essentials to the waterless mesa. Pottery...
Interlaced Cultures
Likely dating from the early to mid sixteenth century, this tile illustrates Spain’s rich multicultural design history. Spain’s remarkable decorative pottery tradition originated during the eighth century when the country was conquered by the Moorish Muslim troops of North Africa as part of the expansion of the Umayyad Caliphate. This sixteenth-century tile shows how influential...
Pattern from the Past
William De Morgan’s ceramic decoration was often inspired by the medieval world, similar to the practice of his dear friends William Morris and Edward Burne-Jones. De Morgan’s vases and tiles were frequently adorned with fantastical animals, beasts, and grotesques. On this vase, two stylized fish recall the designs found in illuminated manuscripts. Their bodies gently...
Design Dictionary: Ceramics
See how ceramics are made in this short video. Gil Grimmett shows how to create a basic project on the pottery wheel at Clayworks on Columbia in Brooklyn, New York. This piece took about 4 hours of active work, plus about 72 hours of air-drying and kiln-firing. About this series: Design Dictionary is a new...
Bill’s Design Talks: A Tribute to Eva Zeisel
Eva Zeisel was an industrial designer, ceramic artist, writer, and force of nature. During her extraordinary career, which spanned nine decades, she produced highly recognizable domestic items that changed the way Americans set their tables and furnished their homes. Zeisel was widely regarded as a master of modern design, creating objects that were beautiful as...
Eva Zeisel’s Playful Search for Beauty
Eva Zeisel was 105 years old when she died on December 30, 2011. She was born in Budapest, Hungary, in 1906 and entered the Hungarian Royal Academy of Fine Arts as a painter in 1923, but soon decided that she wanted to become a “maker of useful things.” She apprenticed herself to a pottery master...
Heath Ceramics and American Pottery
In conjunction with a celebration marking the 60th anniversary of Heath Ceramics noted author and ceramic arts historian Garth Clark lectures on the early California pottery movement, its significance and its future through historic potteries. Design critic and author Amos Klausner introduces his new book HEATH CERAMICS: THE COMPLEXITY OF SIMPLICITY, (Chronicle Books) and leads...
The Craft of Manufacturing
On April 19, Robin Petravic and Catherine Bailey spoke here at Cooper-Hewitt, National Design Museum about their work as owners of the legendary California pottery maker Heath, founded by Edith Heath in the mid-1940s. Their presentation had everyone thinking about the role of craft in manufacturing. They explain, “We believe that the craft of manufacturing...