Crossroads: Three Artists, Three Journeys, One Intersection
In conjunction with the release of the new PBS special, Craft in America: Crossroads, Northern Clay Center presented the work of Clary Illian, Warren MacKenzie, and Jeff Oestreich, who were featured in this particular episode of the series. The paths of these Midwestern potters were greatly influenced by the time they spent as apprentices at the Leach Pottery in St. Ives, Cornwall, England. (Illian: 1964 – 65, MacKenzie: 1950 – 52, Oestreich: 1969 – 71.) Now, 40+ years later, they are still actively making, showing, and exhibiting their work.
In 1920, the Leach Pottery was founded by Bernard Leach and Shoji Hamada. Today, it is credited as the birthplace of British studio pottery. Hundreds of potters trained and apprenticed at the Leach Pottery throughout its history. It is still actively producing a new line of Standardware.
This exhibition included historical and contemporary examples of work by Illian, MacKenzie, and Oestreich, as well as photographs from their time at the Pottery. The Craft in America: Crossroads excerpt was also on view in the gallery.