Seeking the Nuance Continues BC Ceramics History and Research

By Guest Entry

Posted on September 19, 2017 | Updated August 06, 2019, 9:06AM

Seeking the Nuance — three alumni collaborate to continue ceramics history about Leach Pottery Community in the diaspora.

Glenn Lewis (1958), Phyllis Schwartz (2010) and Debra Sloan (2001) published the second edition of Seeking the Nuance: Glaze Experiments of the 60x and 70s from the Ceramics Studios at the University of British Columbia. It includes new critical essays, photographs and glaze recipes. The first edition reached an international audience that that inspired art residencies and academic research and in this second edition is new historical information and discussion about how the Leach Pottery in Cornwall and Mingei philosophy continues to influence many studio practices within the BC ceramic culture.

The 2010 edition of Seeking the Nuance was based on Glenn Lewis’s 1970s glaze recipe card files that had evolved from his early 1960s apprenticeship with Bernard Leach. One of the main outcomes of this publication is academic research written by Alex Lambley, a doctoral candidate at the Leach Pottery in St. Ives, Cornwall.

According to Debra Sloan these recipes not only demonstrate the numerous influences imported to British Columbia but also they convey how information is utilized, especially in the constructed and geographically sequestered cultural environment in BC.

Phyllis Schwartz believes that sharing these recipes will continue conversation amongst potters as they seek to nuance these heritage recipes work within their own practices.

The book launch was held at the Gallery of BC Ceramics in May 2017, and copies are available.