New Book - Emmanuel Cooper - Contemporary Ceramics; Press release:

28 Oct 2009

Emmanuel Cooper

A worldwide survey of innovative work, ranging from makers of functional ceramic objects such as teapots and tableware to those who explore the possibilities of clay as an artistic medium

Over the last decade the narrowing of the gulf that traditionally existed between the realms of fine art and craft has resulted in a shift in perception of what ceramics can be and can mean. All areas of ceramic practice have been revitalized as a result—the creative possibilities that artists, lured by the plastic and tactile qualities of clay, have brought with them into ceramics have influenced ceramists of all backgrounds.

Analyzing work from the last ten years, this book covers every aspect of contemporary ceramic practice and includes work of all sizes—from a few inches to large-scale installations. It is organized into five main chapters:

  • Beyond Utility: original yet functional ceramics
  • Defining Space: wheel-thrown shapes, slip-cast forms, and hand-built structures
  • Mind the Gap: sculptural work from precise and mechanical to freely modeled forms
  • A Sense of Space: installations, both site-specific and environmental
  • The Line of Beauty: collaborations between art and industry that result from advances in technology

Emmanuel Cooper is a practicing ceramist, writer, and critic. He is the editor of Ceramic Review and Visiting Professor of Ceramics and Glass at the Royal College of Art, London.


  • biographies of the featured ceramists
  • a directory of museums and galleries

ISBN 978-0-500-51487-0 · 83/4" x 91/2" · 611 color illustrations · 304 pages ·

Editor: Studiopottery comments:

 Includes biographies of many of our members: Duncan Ayscough, Jenny Beavan, David Binns, Matthew Blakeley, Dylan Bowen, Kyra Cane, Halima Cassell, Jack Doherty, Karen Downing, Antje Ernestus, Tanya Gomez, Ashraf Hanna, Makoto Hatori, Regina Heinz, Annie Hewett, John Higgins, Ashley Howard, Joanna Howells, Chris Keenan, Anne-marie Laureys, John Leach, Martin Lungley, Ivar McKay, Martin McWilliam, Jim Malone, Kate Malone, Gareth Mason, Tony Moore, William Plumtre, Phil Rogers, Duncan Ross, Antonia Salmon, Ruthanne Tudball, Patricia Volk, Josie Walter, sasha Wardell, Carole Windham. - sorry if I missed anyone.

Don't expect too much from the biographies - 50 or 60 words is the limit, but even so it is a useful summary including some fantastic ceramicists and potters, but having some surprising omissions as well!

It would be nice to think that in time all the ceramicists on this can be seen on but I'm not holding my breath:) 

There are some stunning images in this book - showing the diversity and reach of modern ceramics. well worth a good read - and a book that I personally will enjoy returning to on future occasions.