Monday, July 16, 2007

Craft Intelligence

I have just discovered an essential blog for anyone interested in handmade ceramics. Judith and David Rofe are serious collectors of contemporary Australian pottery and have set up a scholarly and fascinating blog on their collection with an emphasis on tracking down the provenance of unknown pieces. This is a major contribution to the craft community . Australian pottery is rarely treated so seriously and with such respect. Recording the history of our craft increases 'Craft intelligence" in everyday society, this leads to an increased appreciation of the role artists play in our communities and, in turn, a greater chance of artists being able to make a living.

Here is what Judith sees as the role of her blog and collection:
"I've been anxious that contemporary potters might not like a blog encouraging people to collect work from "the last century". It is now much harder to make a living as a potter so shouldn't the collecting dollars go to new work? But at the moment there are few outlets where Australians can gain an appreciation of Australian pottery. Public collections are not often on display (with the exception of Shepparton). Retail outlets are few and far between, replaced by shops selling glass or imported pottery. Work in private galleries is often very highly priced and targeted to an elite market.
It is also a snapshot of a current body of work and doesn't reveal any history of development of a potter's individual style. It is as though a potter always exists in the present. And even the term "Australian pottery" has been commandeered in the collecting world by pre-war studio pottery and the slip-cast work of semi-commercial potteries."

This contemporary potter thanks you from the bottom of my heart...........
The images are of my hands. They were taken by Anne Mossman at a recent workshop I did for the Gold Coast Potters. Blogging and virtual friends are fun but they are no replacement for coming down to earth and meeting wonderful artists and budding artists . Sharing knowledge is what keeps a craft alive. Read more about what a fun weekend we had here..and here.


Rebecca-the-Wrecker said...

Anne's photos are wonderful! Judith and David's blog is excellent too - I wonder if they will be able to find out the identity of their mystery potters thru the blog!

Chi Le (aka Peppa) said...

oh how i wish i could have gone to one of your workshops. how fun and i love your work!