Ceramics: Art and Perception

Ceramics: Art and Perception

No. 116

Ceramics Art + Perception sets the international standard for high quality journals dedicated to ceramic art. With a total of 120 pages, each issue contains approximately 25 substantive reviews, essays and features, covering a broad range of issues related to the field. The magazine is printed in full-colour with high-res images supporting each text. Ceramics Art + Perception continues to deliver you the best critical writing from around the world since 1991.

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8 min.
the fashionable figures of 1916–1928 chinese porcelain

Chinese ceramic art changed abruptly at the end of the Qing Dynasty, even though the development of ceramics as an art continued through to the founding of the People’s Republic of China (PRC). In recent years there has been an increasing focus on the significance of the hand-glazed paintings that appeared on porcelain during the establishment of the PRC. It is widely known that the Qing Dynasty had been overthrown a century ago, led by the revolutionary Sun Yat-Sen. This new era opened China up to the outside world and brought influences of western culture. The decoration of porcelain during this time reflects the influence of the West and allows us to understand how Chinese women became interested in fashion from Europe and America, and therefore weakened the intrinsic values…

6 min.
drifting dangerously

Today the experience of waste and pollution is entirely natural. Wherever we happen to be, our adored archipelagos of locality are permeated by a profusion of contaminations that bathe the entire planet. In the world’s burgeoning metropolises − which are now home to well over half the human population − everyday life is carried out amidst a haze of industrial and photochemical air pollutions, the slow but steady secretion of toxins into waterways, soils and living cells, the seemingly endless accumulation of plastic bags, old furniture and discarded technology in laneways, parks and dumps, and the pummelling of our senses and bodies with the electromagnetic static of media and malodorous advertising. Such wholesale contamination is symptomatic of our civilisation’s economies of commodification and consumption. Floods of wastes pour forth from the…

11 min.
black friday

After making pots for twenty years and teaching college ceramics for ten years, at some point I decided a change was needed. Maybe it was the three hour faculty committee meetings after teaching all day. Or my colleagues at lunch asking me “Why I wanted to play with clay?” Many months were spent developing a plan that hopefully would get me out of the deeply worn pattern that had crept up on me over the years since graduate school. With some careful thought and a considerable amount of money I moved from the city to the country. My new house had a walk out sunny basement, which made a perfect place for my pottery studio. The space had good light and large windows opening onto a grassy lawn edged by…

11 min.
spontaneous response: the innovative ceramics of don reitz westmont ridley-tree museum of art westmont college, santa barbara, usa aug 29 – nov 9 2019

For three months during the fall of 2019, nearly 80 ceramic objects by the artist Don Reitz (1929–2014) were on view at the Westmont Ridley-Tree Museum of Art on the campus of Westmont College, located in the hills east of Santa Barbara in Southern California. Reitz’s creative output was represented by a selection of robust sculptures and exuberant utilitarian ware. Towers, teastacks, large vessels, pitchers, jars, and tea bowls illustrated the creative breadth of this prolific artist, who expertly employed wood and salt-firing techniques to achieve painterly surfaces on his varied forms. Also known as “Mr. Salt”, Don Reitz successfully revived the age-old practice of salt glazing, advancing the technique with exciting effects. When he felt it was warranted, he used colored slips as a counterpoint to the warm hues…

7 min.
vale robin welch: potter, painter, printmaker 23/7/1936–5/12/2019 an australian connection

Robin Welch died recently aged 83. He was an innovative artist who used ceramics, painting and printmaking as his chosen media within which he integrated themes. He developed new forms and techniques, often combining different methods of construction: hand-built, thrown and slab sections, to provide a canvas for his ideas. In 2007, to coincide with his 70th birthday, a major retrospective of his work was held at the Rufford Ceramic Centre in Nottinghamshire in recognition of his lifetime of commitment to making art. It included installations of pots, paintings, prints and wall-panels. Evident in many of these works were the influences of the Australian landscape, the colours, textures and its harsh, rugged beauty as expressed through Welch’s understanding of materiality. Welch was from Warwickshire and studied art at college in Nuneaton, followed…

10 min.
merran esson: a life of collecting

I love collecting, I love it when I see something I want, I do a little negotiation with my brain and my bank balance. Do I really want it? Do I really need this piece in my collection? Ultimately my brain normally wins and I end up with them on my shelf − I smile at them every day. Is it an addiction? Being a collector is a bit like having conversations with strangers, because the works enter into your home and sit on your shelves and are there every day as the sunshines. They cast shadows; I like the emotiveness of the shadows. It is quite exciting, it is about conversations with strangers, and friends in a way, but they do not know that I am having these conversations with…