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Potter's Book Paperback – 4 Oct 1976


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--This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.


Product details

  • Paperback: 296 pages
  • Publisher: Faber & Faber; 3rd Revised edition edition (4 Oct 1976)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0571049273
  • ISBN-13: 978-0571049271
  • Product Dimensions: 19.8 x 13 x 1.8 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 821,504 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Product Description

Review

"Mr. Leach has worked for a quarter of a century first in the Far East and more recently in England, and his output combines the best qualities of both worlds." -- "TLS" "It is the soundest and most detailed book which has ever been written on this subject, and any potter, connoisseur or student of ceramics who neglects to buy it is making a very stupid omission." -- Maurice Collis in "Time and Tide" --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

About the Author

Bernard Leach (1887-1979) was one of the most influential figures in twentieth-century pottery. Born in Hong Kong and brought up in Japan, Hong Kong and England, he trained at the London School of Art and moved to Japan in 1909, where he studied pottery techniques. In 1920 on his return to England he founded the Leach Pottery with Shoji Hamada in St Ives, Cornwall. His best-known work, A Potter's Book, was first published in 1940. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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22 of 22 people found the following review helpful By Amazon Customer on 10 Feb 2009
Format: Paperback
After ten years of Pottery (at the level of serious hobbyist) I finally read the Leach magnum opus, and feel rather like the foolish convert to a religion who has only just got around to reading its holy book. All potters should read it. For studio pottery, this is where it starts.

The first two chapters are philosophical and chewy. It is soon apparent that Leach was a towering intellectual and polymath as well as a turning-point in the history of art. They reward reading, and explain why he regards the pots of the Sung (Song) dynasty as superior to everything else. From the third chapter the content is more practical but still, and brilliantly, infused with Leach's strong opinions about what's good and what's bad. And that's why the book is such a good read, it's a far remove from modern pottery texts, which are either dry technical manuals (all be it with glossy photos to make them look like coffee table books) or magazine articles (Ceramic Review) in pure arty-farty-Tate-Modern speak. Leach, sensible, passionate, technically detailed and evangelical about good style all at the same time, is deeply, joyously refreshing.

A few parts are obsolete - enjoinders to paint the iron hoops on your glaze barrels to prevent rust contamination - but nonetheless fascinating as technical history. What was happening in the world in September 1939? Why there was a firing at St Ives of course, and here is the detailed report, with firing log (a thing of artistic beauty in itself) and a description of a week in his workshop done in the form of an exchange of letters.

Full of bits you never knew - "Oh, so that's why it's done that way!" - and bits you'll want to write out as inspiring quotations to treasure. Old, out of publication at the moment (what a sin!) but a true inspiration, which I'm sure, will be a lasting one to any reader.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Wessex Photo Books on 16 Dec 2011
Format: Paperback
Wonderful book, get it in Hard back if you can, because you're going to want to have this on your shelf for ever! Zen and the art of the potter, less really is so much more...
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: 3 reviews
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
The potter's bible...aptly named 24 July 2011
By jsimmon - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
The first chapter of this book should be read by every potter before their first day of class. That is to avoid being scoffed at. Seriously, if you are someone who is involved with clay on any level, read this book.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
Universal Truths 9 Jun 2013
By S. Young - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
This book is not only applicable to pottery, sculpture, and design, I have found myself relating this book to every area of life. A Tao for the potter, the artist, the human wishing to engage thoughtfully with the world.
30 of 54 people found the following review helpful
Beware: A Potter's Book 2 Aug 2005
By Clayhead - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
This is now perhaps no more a historical document. Very sadly many potters have taken the book to be the bible of pottery, accepting all that is written without question. However the observations and comments within it are one man's only, and this shows considerable prejudice. Take care as there are many approaches to ceramics and it is flawed to consider anyone is the correct path. More than any other document this book has distorted generations of potters to consider that the Japanese rural tradition is superior to anything else, and hence has led to almost the homogenisation of studio ceramics. Explore other ways!
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