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The Complete Book of Ceramic Art by Polly Rothenberg

The Complete Book of Ceramic Art by Polly Rothenberg.

Published first in 1972, Crown Publishers, New York.

The Complete Book of Ceramic Art by Polly Rothenberg.

Contents include: Contributing Artists; List of Color Plates; Foreword; Section:

 1) Introduction: The Nature of Clay; Preparation; Fundamentals:

2) Pottery Making: Forming Methods and Projects: Pinched Forms; Clay-Slab Construction; Working with Coils; Drape Molds; Press Molds; Mold Casting; Throwing on the Potters Wheel; Firing the Kiln,

3) Ceramic Design and Decoration: Texturing and Impressing; Carved Designs; The Versatile Pattern Paddle; Clay Applique; Clay Cloisonne; Tooled Texture; Clay Inlay; Decorating with Slip (Engobes); Oxide Colorants; Glazing; Colored and Metallic Lusters; Decorating with Lump Enamel,

4) Ceramic Sculpture and Architecture: Sculpture from Geometric Forms; Hollowed Out Sculpture; Sculpture from Clay Slabs; Clay Coil Sculpture; Architectural Ceramics,

5) Other Ceramic Forms: Raku; Functional Forms; New Ceramic Forms; Jewelry from Egyptian Paste; Bibliography; Glossary; Supply Sources; and Index. There are 276 pages with 690 b/w and color photographs.

This is actually a how to book, though besides the instructions, there are great examples of 1950's and 60's studio pottery pictured throughout. There are 18 color pages. Throughout the book are reproductions of the finished works of seventy-five of today's leading craftsmen, along with many explanations of the development of the pieces and colors used by the artists themselves. Featured are works by a number of potters including Thomas Shafer, Edwin & Mary Scheier, John Glick, John Stephenson, Jack Feltman, Robert Pipenburg, Julie & Tyrone Larson, Bob Richardson, Lucien den Arend, Raul Coronel, Miron Webster, and several others. The author, Polly Rothenberg and her husband Maurice are both Studio Pottery artist's.

Pottery Making; Design; Decoration; Sculpture; Architecture; Raku; Jewelry. Anyone who wants to create magnificent pieces of pottery that are functional, decorative, and easy to make will find everything he needs to know in Polly Rothenberg's latest work, the most authoritative book on ceramic art available today. Superbly illustrated with 690 photographs that take the reader through every step to successful pottery making.

Section One is a complete course in pottery making, from forming the clay to firing the finished piece in the kiln. This includes the clay-slab construction technique, which yields many lovely objects, from slab trays and candleholders to lidded jars and boxes and textured slab vases; several coil methods; drape molds, made from ordinary items like cardboard boxes and blocks of Styrofoam wrapped in newspaper, as well as detailed instructions for making drape molds from potter's plaster; and press molds, used to make ceramic tiles, jewelry, buttons, and pottery ornamentation.

This section also includes detailed instructions for throwing on the potter's wheel, stacking and firing the kiln. Section Two is an intensive look at ceramic design and decoration. The author discusses texturing and impressing carved designs, pattern paddles, clay appliqué, clay cloisonné, tooled texture, and clay inlay. In addition she offers advice about decorating with slip (powdered clay), with oxide colorants, with lump enamel, and with colored lusters. Section Three presents sculpture from geometric forms, hollowed-out sculpture, sculpture from clay slabs, and clay coil sculpture, including many exquisite designs - human figures, animals, abstracts, and murals. In the final section, other ceramic forms are explained and illustrated, including raku and jewelry made with Egyptian paste.


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