Tuesday, June 12, 2012

The Temptation

It all started in November 2010 during the American Ceramic Circle conference hosted by the Chipstone Foundation in conjuction with the premier exhibition of Art in Clay at Milwaukee Art Museum. Basically a ceramic love fest that included everything from a revolving masterwork by 19th century enslaved potter Dave Drake to the fantastical Rooms of Wonder reinstallation at the Chipstone Galleries. Among the speakers was Reino Liefkes senior curator of ceramics and glass at the V&A who offered us an incredible behind the scenes look at the planning design and reinstallation of the new ceramics galleries.
I had been aware of the massive project and had some slight involvement because the V&A had asked to use my work illustrating English slipware and agate techniques published in Ceramics in America 2001 and 2003 coauthored with editor Robert Hunter. The V&A had also acquired my work Octopus Junk for the reinstallation which is on permanent loan from the Chipstone Foundation Collection and now on display in the world ceramics room.
However I was blown away by Reino's presentation which just made you want to jump on a plane to go see it! After I gave my own demonstration on making North Carolina Moravian pottery, some of which adopted staffordshire potting techniques, Reino and I got to talking and he asked if I might be interested to come to the V&A to do a ceramic residency in the new studio within the galleries making room.
An offer I could not refuse.

Adam and Eve (Print)

  • Date: 1504 (engraved)
  • Place: Nuremberg
  • Artist/maker: Durer, Albrecht