The Chapel of Art on wed 15 feb 06
I have not been following the thread and do not
know where this all started, but a single
sentence started me off, so please forgive the
lapse into old ways... Those adverse to my little
rants should delete now!!
I do not *personally* see any validity in
(re)assigning new names or definitions to old
institutions. I have no doubt this dubious form
of political correctness is completely out of
place and urge everyone to think hard about the
consequences! Such exercises will lead to total
confusion with no one knowing what the others are
I am equally sure that this view will annoy all
the touchy-feely folk who want the World and his
Wife to feel included and one of the gang, no
matter what and hang the consequences! But that
in itself in a very new fashion. Nobody had any
time for such niceties in the Olden Days, as
reflected in language usage.
So please... Potters spent their lives in
workshops, which were either one-man work places
or (more than likely) small scale factories with
several generations of potters working side by
side. Other artisans, designers and artists
worked in ateliers or studios. In some cases they
too could be described as workshops or even
factories. It all depended on the scale of
There was naturally cross-over, for example where
an employee designer or draughtsman worked on
creating new products (either models or in
theory) in an area separate to the production
line. But this was a much later development when
manufacture was no longer the Master-Craftsman
lead small business meeting local needs, but a
much larger scale undertaking in a company, owned
and run by men in suits often with shareholders
to keep happy and export quotas to fill!
And then there is plain snobbishness! What is
wrong with calling a potter's place of work, "a
workshop"? What is there to be ashamed about?
My sense of the ridiculous is tickled at the very
thought of a low-tech environment where
native/ethnic/folk art pots are made, being
referred to as "a studio". It is so pretentious
it beggars belief!
And yes... What we regard as a studio today is
the result of a shift away from the traditional
path which lead individuals to become lone
potters or (much later) ceramic artists. Someone
coming from a formal learning environment
(college) to work in their own workshop, could
regard it as a studio and maybe they are the
latest members of the "Studio Movement", which in
itself is only the most recent organisational
development after several millennia of pot making
The workshop to studio cross-over is equal to the
transition from pottery to ceramics and cannot be
given a precise date IMO. But it happened around
the time that corresponds to the shift to formal
education and away from practical/vocational
training "on the job". This was some time between
WWI and WWII in Europe and North America and I
expect there were regional differences even
Janet Kaiser -- I may be the only one, but I
simply did not understand Phil's Old American
joke! I did not set out to feel insulted
either... "Insult" is sometimes a frame of mind
more than the words uttered.
THE CHAPEL OF ART - or - CAPEL CELFYDDYD
8 Marine Crescent : Criccieth : GB-Wales LL52 0EA
Plan visiting The International Potters Path?
Contact: Janet Kaiser
Tel: ++44 (01766) 523122
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Lee Love on thu 16 feb 06
On Wed, 15 Feb 2006 23:32:00 +0000, The Chapel of Art
>I have not been following the thread and do not
>know where this all started,
Thanks for your input Janet. It started with a story I was trying to
tell about Hamada during his first tour of America. I think the term
"studio potter" is variable enough to ask the user what he means when he
uses it. I agree, we can put the term on folk potters, but they
certainly didn't think of themselves in these "high falootin' terms.
The phenomenon we see today: educated people supporting
themselves (without teaching or working for industry), making
affordable functional pottery, is a pretty new phenomenon made possible
the the economic prosperity we have. Not sure if it is as possible
today as it was a couple/ three decades ago. Possible, but I think it
is tougher for young folks to make a start.
in Mashiko, Japan http://mashiko.org
http://seisokuro.blogspot.com/ My Photo Logs
Taylor, in Rockport TX on thu 16 feb 06
Lovely rant. I was startled not to find 'manufactory'
in your rant. It's a word I have seen lately in my
readings of 1800s pottery in America. Is that a
politically motivated vocabulary change too?
I sure hope you don't wad your knickers when I write
about my workshop as the 'garagio' to keep from
calling it a studio, your sense of the ridiculous
notwithstanding. Hehe (<--mad Quebecker laugh)
Taylor, in Rockport TX
On Wed, 15 Feb 2006 23:32:00 +0000, The Chapel of Art COA.ORG.UK> wrote:
...>I do not *personally* see any validity in
>(re)assigning new names or definitions to old
>And then there is plain snobbishness! What is
>wrong with calling a potter's place of work, "a
>workshop"? What is there to be ashamed about?
>My sense of the ridiculous is tickled at the very
>thought of a low-tech environment where
>native/ethnic/folk art pots are made, being
>referred to as "a studio". It is so pretentious
>it beggars belief!
Stephani Stephenson on thu 16 feb 06
Ah Janet I think it is perhaps a matter of not only 'where' but
'when' a person got involved with clay that determines the word used.
For example I have not been familiar with the word 'workshop' used to
describe the pottery workplace.
I think it may have enjoyed more popular usage earlier in the 20th
century, and possibly more so in certain areas/locales with strong
To me the word 'workshop' is more familiar a a term for a short term
i.e. a tile or pottery 'workshop' here in the U.S. in this day and
age, to my ears anyway, signals a usually 2 day to 2 week educational
event, not a place where pots, tile, etc. is made.
'Studio' was the only word I ever heard.
I did get my experience in ceramics through a college 'studio' .
When we wanted to throw pots we went to the 'studio'. Since that is all
I ever knew or heard, it never occurred to me that there was another
term or that 'studio' might be heard as a snob term, especially at
the 'studio' I worked in, where one had to elbow out loggers ,
fishermen , hairdressers, and housewives for wheel space.
(Since I wore workboots and occasionally chewed snoose I usually did
alright, though the hairdressers could be real trouble. just KIDDING!)
anyway I just never heard of an alternative term, so studio it was.
Production potteries I knew about, where people were paid by the piece,
and were hired, were referred to as 'potteries' as far as I can
remember, or by the specific name of the pottery or company.
I use studio to delineate the small one or two person operation from a
factory or a manufacturer...
for tax purposes, small scale operations definitely do not want to be
tagged as manufacturers!
in my business I use 'tileworks' in my name because I also want to
indicate that I can make projects of at least moderate scale, though in
the world of tilemaking I am less than a 'dot' in scale....
In terms of zoning, an 'artist studio' can exist legally in many more
locations than a 'manufacturer', so there ARE reasons to use both of
the designations of 'artist' and 'studio', which have nothing to do
with snobbery but practical survival in our modern cities and towns
I like the word 'workshop, also kind of like the word 'shop' or just a
'pottery' for those who make pots.
It may be that by the time some of us got around to it, in some parts
of the world where our localities were not immersed in a local pottery
tradition, the use of the word workshop , as you use it , had
disappeared, or faded, or perhaps not ever been established.
Thank you for your perspective on the word! your posts are , as usual,
quite informative !
Lee Love on sat 18 feb 06
On Fri, 17 Feb 2006 22:21:58 +0000, Rick Hamelin :
>What ever happened to Lee, think he just gave up the fight in
>aceptance?It was my pleasure. Hope to do it again
>BTW, it is too bad that so few participated in the discussion. But
>again, we all have our interests.
D You just haven't been reading what i wrote, that is all.
But that is no surprise, because you are arguing against something I
Rush Limbaugh and AM radio has taught folks that arguing is more
important than trying to communicate and understand. It is sad that
you enjoy not communicating.
Here is something that you probably missed:
> On Wed, 15 Feb 2006 23:32:00 +0000, The Chapel of Art
>>I have not been following the thread and do not
>>know where this all started,
> Thanks for your input Janet. It started with a story I was trying to
> tell about Hamada during his first tour of America. I think the term
> "studio potter" is variable enough to ask the user what he means when he
> uses it. I agree, we can put the term on folk potters, but they
> certainly didn't think of themselves in these "high falootin' terms.
> The phenomenon we see today: educated people supporting
> themselves (without teaching or working for industry), making
> affordable functional pottery, is a pretty new phenomenon made possible
> the the economic prosperity we have. Not sure if it is as possible
> today as it was a couple/ three decades ago. Possible, but I think it
> is tougher for young folks to make a start.
in Mashiko, Japan http://mashiko.org
http://seisokuro.blogspot.com/ My Photo Logs
"Our scientific power has outrun our spiritual power. We have guided
missiles and misguided men.
--Martin Luther King Jr. (1929 - 1968)
Rick Hamelin on sat 18 feb 06
Yowser. Felt like I went quail hunting with ol' Dick C.
Lee, please accept my apologies for threading your commentary about studios (where I picked up on porcelain in Georgia) and my commentary on whitewares.
I meant no ill will. I lost track and didn't pick up on this thread in this subject bar as this subject differed from the others we were discussing. I assumed that you were silently passing on commenting and I questioned why. Again, I was on a roll with whitewares.
Your words: Rush Limbaugh and AM radio has taught folks that arguing is more important than trying to communicate and understand. It is sad that you enjoy not communicating.
It was not my intention to be a victor in this and the pleasure was solely in discussing historical whitewares and porcelain and certainly not in defeating either you or any ClayArt poster. My Two sentances with two different intentions were linked in a way that implied I was looking for a fight here on clayart.Farthest thing from the truth.
I am here to learn and participate, and make some friends.
I regret any confusion and I certainly do enjoy communicating with you.
"Many a wiser men than I hath
gone to pot." 1649