5.0 Leach Legacy / Mingeisota

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Contemporary Ceramic History

Text of 5.0 Leach Legacy / Mingeisota

  • Greetings from!THEof how to become

    famous for being unknown

    and beyondBERN

    ARD

    LEACH,

    POTTER

    Thursday, March 22, 2012

  • Bernard Leach

    * Leach was born in 1887 in Hong Kong, but spent his young adult years in Japan where he came into contact with a group of young Japanese art lovers who called themselves Shirakaba ().

    Thursday, March 22, 2012

  • (Bernard Leach) first encountered pottery while in Japan in 1911, when attending a dinner party he was asked to decorate a teabowl. The bowl was a raku bowl and it was soon returned to him fired and still warm , it was this encounter that was to set the course of his life.

    Thursday, March 22, 2012

  • *Through them he learned about William Morris and the Arts and Crafts Movement. It was in Japan that Leach began potting and befriended a young potter named Shoji Hamada.

    Thursday, March 22, 2012

  • With Hamada, he set up the Leach Pottery at St. Ives, Cornwall in 1920, including the construction of a traditional Japanese wood burning kiln.

    Thursday, March 22, 2012

  • The two of them promoted pottery as a combination of Western and Eastern arts and philosophies. In their work they focused on traditional Korean, Japanese and Chinese pottery, in combination with traditional techniques from England and Germany, such as slipware and salt glaze ware.

    Thursday, March 22, 2012

  • A recurring theme of his decoration

    is nature, trees and birds, perhaps

    standing for freedom and fauna, wild

    grasses and flowers all beautifully

    represented and glowing with fire of

    life. A favourite pattern the Tree of

    Life perhaps best encapsulates

    Leach's spiritual side as does his

    pilgrim motif, which may represent

    Leach himself alone but not loney,

    traveling life's great journey.

    Thursday, March 22, 2012

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  • Leach formally joined the Bah' Faith in 1940. A pilgrimage to the Bah' shrines in Haifa, Israel, during 1954 intensified his feeling that he should do more to unite the East and West by returning to the Orient "to try more honestly to do my work there as a Bah' and as an artist...

    Thursday, March 22, 2012

  • In the Bah' Faith, religious history is seen to have unfolded through a series of divine messengers, each of whom established a religion that was suited to the needs of the time and the capacity of the people. These messengers have included Abraham, Buddha, Jesus, Muhammad and others, and most recently the Bb and Bah'u'llh. In Bah' belief, each consecutive messenger prophesied of messengers to follow, and Bah'u'llh's life and teachings fulfilled the end-time promises of previous scriptures. Humanity is understood to be in a process of collective evolution, and the need of the present time is for the gradual establishment of peace, justice and unity on a global scale.

    [ ]on spirituality.......

    Thursday, March 22, 2012

  • `Leach advocated simple and utilitarian forms he called ethical pots. His ethical pots stand in opposition to what he called fine art pots, which promoted aesthetic concerns rather than function.

    the philosophy...

    Thursday, March 22, 2012

  • Ethical pot was first coined by Oliver Watson in his book Studio Pottery: Twentieth Century British Ceramics in the Victoria and Albert Museum

    A back-to-basics pottery movement that endorsed plainer utilitarian styles over fine art. Other names for pots in this style are the ego-less pot or utilitarian pot.

    Thursday, March 22, 2012

  • Ethical pot was first coined by Oliver Watson in his book Studio Pottery: Twentieth Century British Ceramics in the Victoria and Albert Museum

    A back-to-basics pottery movement that endorsed plainer utilitarian styles over fine art. Other names for pots in this style are the ego-less pot or utilitarian pot.

    Thursday, March 22, 2012

  • The proponents were theoretically opposed to the expressive pots or fine art pots of other post-war potters such as William Staite Murray, Lucie Rie and Hans Coper.

    Thursday, March 22, 2012

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  • According to ceramic art critics of today,

    this pot style was intended to be

    modernist, useful, and "democratic in

    usage" as opposed to the the fine art pot

    and also opposed to industrial art.

    Thursday, March 22, 2012

  • *They saw pottery as a

    combination of art,

    philosophy, design and craft

    even as a greater lifestyle.

    However, many in the West

    considered their pottery

    crude by the refined

    standards of the day.

    Publishing A Potter's Book in

    1940 defined Leach's craft

    philosophy and techniques,

    and became his

    breakthrough to recognition.

    Thursday, March 22, 2012

  • Leach was instrumental in organizing the only International

    Conference of Potters and Weavers in July 1952.

    among them Shoji Hamada and US-based Bauhaus master

    potter Marguerite Wildenhain. Another important contributor

    was Japanese aesthetician Soetsu Yanagi, author of The

    Unknown Craftsman. "The most important outcome of the

    conference was that it helped organize the modern studio

    pottery movement by giving a voice to the people who

    became its leadersit gave them [Leach, Hamada and

    Yanagi] celebrity status[while] Marguerite Wildenhain

    emerged from Dartinghall Hall as the most important craft

    potter in America."

    art cornwall.org

    the legacy.....

    Thursday, March 22, 2012

  • Many potters from all over the world were apprenticed at the Leach Pottery, and spread Leach's style and beliefs.

    His British associates and trainees include He was a major in f luence on the leading New Zealand potter Len Castle who travelled to L o n d o n t o s p e n d t i m e working with him in the mid-1950s.

    M a n y o f h i s C a n a d i a n apprentices made up the vibrant pottery-scene of the Canadian Westcoast during the 1970s in Vancouver.

    Thursday, March 22, 2012

  • British apprentices include...

    Michael CardewNora BradenDavid Leach (his son)Michael Leach (his son)Janet Darnell (whom Leach married)William MarshallSylvia HardakerKenneth QuickRichard Batterham.American apprentices include...

    Warren MacKenzieByron Temple Clary Illian Jeff Oestrich

    Thursday, March 22, 2012

  • Popularized in the 1940s after the publication of A Potter's Book,

    his style had lasting influence on counter-culture and modern

    design in North America during the 1950s and 1960s. Leach ran a

    modern cooperative workshop which created a catalogue of

    handmade pottery for the general public. He continued to produce

    pots which were exhibited as works of art.

    Thursday, March 22, 2012

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  • 5 January 1887 6 May 1979Thursday, March 22, 2012

  • Thursday, March 22, 2012

  • on the leach legacy

    "With!six!decades!of!hindsight!on!the!developments!of!studio!ceramics!(or,!as!Garth!Clark!feels!is!the!lack!of!development),!Clark!narrows!down!the!blame!to!Bernard!Leach,!declaring!that,!"Instead!of!responding!to!our!own!times,!most!functional!ceramists!are!still!trying!to!channel!the!dead!potters!of!the!Sung!Dynasty.!In!the!process!they!have!become!Bernard!Leach's!orphans,!lost!children!with!no!place!in!the!family!of!contemporary!life."!It!isn't!so!much!that!he!regrets!the!existence!of!Bernard!Leach!as!he!feels!the!influence!has!taken!the!majority!of!studio!ceramists!in!its!grip.!...!Clark!says"in!order!to!be!a!participant!in!modern!times,!ceramists!must!disavow!themselves!of!the!romanticism!of!the!life!of!the!'unknown!craftsman'!who!is!just!managing!to!scrape!together!his!means!while!performing!a!greater!service!of!bringing!handmade!art!to!the!masses,!a!life!even!Leach!had!

    to!admit!was!not!feasible."

    garth clark

    Thursday, March 22, 2012

  • on the leach legacy

    "With!six!decades!of!hindsight!on!the!developments!of!studio!ceramics!(or,!as!Garth!Clark!feels!is!the!lack!of!development),!Clark!narrows!down!the!blame!to!Bernard!Leach,!declaring!that,!"Instead!of!responding!to!our!own!times,!most!functional!ceramists!are!still!trying!to!channel!the!dead!potters!of!the!Sung!Dynasty.!In!the!process!they!have!become!Bernard!Leach's!orphans,!lost!children!with!no!place!in!the!family!of!contemporary!life."!It!isn't!so!much!that!he!regrets!the!existence!of!Bernard!Leach!as!he!feels!the!influence!has!taken!the!majority!of!studio!ceramists!in!its!grip.!...!Clark!says"in!order!to!be!a!participant!in!modern!times,!ceramists!must!disavow!themselves!of!the!romanticism!of!the!life!of!the!'unknown!craftsman'!who!is!just!managing!to!scrape!together!his!means!while!performing!a!greater!service!of!bringing!handmade!art!to!the!masses,!a!life!even!Leach!had!

    to!admit!was!not!feasible."

    garth clark

    Thursday, March 22, 2012

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  • Thursday, March 22, 2012

  • garth on leach continued.....Clark has called Bernard Leachs ideals a patchwork of blind faith,

    myth, contradiction, obstructionism and sentimental fantasy; He

    believes it is a philosophy of w