Leach Pottery, Higher Stennack
The Leach Pottery in St Ives was established by Bernard Leach and Shoji Hamada in 1920. One of the great figures of 20th century art, Leach played a crucial pioneering role in creating an identity for artist potters in Britain and around the world.
Today, following a restoration and rebuild project which was completed in 2008, the Leach Pottery includes the historic workshop and kilns, a dedicated museum space, contemporary gallery and shop and working production studios where the new range of Leach tableware is made by a small international team of potters and apprentices. A new education and research space is being developed on site with support from Cornwall Council and Heritage Lottery Funding.
Museum, Gallery, Artist studio or collective
March - October
Open every day
10.00 - 17.00, Sundays 11.00 - 16.00
November - February
Open Monday - Saturday
10.00 - 17.00
Last admissions to museum 30 minutes before closing
Closed 24, 25 & 26 December
Concessions: £4.00Under 18s: Free if accompanied by an adult
Production studios on site where tableware is made. This is available for sale through the shop, mail order and through other high quality outlets
- 28 March — 23 May 2015 *on now
Many of you will know Joanna through her long involvement at the Leach Pottery which dates from 1988 when she was invited by Janet Leach to be her personal assistant and which continues today through her work in our gallery and museum. You may well remember the beautiful exhibition of Janet’s life and work that Jo curated and presented at the Pottery in 2010 and still more of you will have seen and admired her distinctive bottle vases, bowls and yunomis which we regularly display in the Leach shop and which she now makes from her studio near St Just alongside her distinctive ceramic sculptures.
This new exhibition of close to 100 works, is a chance to see a substantial collection of work by one Cornwall’s most significant but rarely exhibited potters, showcasing the sheer breadth of Joanna’s output. It includes porcelain, stoneware and slipware pieces and figurative sculptures. Her elegant, long necked porcelain pots are wheel-thrown and finished with the muted colour and naturally occurring surface detail of white or ash glaze while her bolder, stoneware pots are thrown, slab built or formed over ‘hump moulds’ and fired with an ash or iron glaze. Her richly coloured, functional slipware is finished with a warm honey glaze and includes bottles, bowls, platters and Japanese yunomis. Contrasting the functional nature of her pottery are Joanna’s well known figurative sculptures; inspired in part by the tradition of Mycenaean sculpture, they are originally made in clay, before being cast in bronze or iron resin.
- Any age
Free to exhibition only. Entry to Museum £4.50 (£4 concessions)
Mark Griffiths 40 Years
- 30 May — 11 July 2015
The Leach Pottery St Ives presents a celebratory exhibition of work by Shropshire based potter Mark Griffiths to mark his 40th year as a professional potter. Mark set up his first workshop in 1975 with the help of a New Craftsman Grant awarded by the Crafts Advisory Committee, and began his career making domestic stoneware. In 1982 he relocated to Shropshire and set up home in a redundant village school, where he established his current working studio, kilns and pottery showroom.
Known as a ‘big ware’ thrower, Mark continues to make high-fired stoneware in between commissions for large scale garden pots, and over the last twenty years has created hundreds of outdoor pieces for historic venues such as the Powis Castle estate and Hampton Court’s spectacular formal gardens.
In this, his first ever solo show at the Leach Pottery, Mark will showcase both his large, standalone pots and smaller domestic ware. The unifying focus of the collection is one of ‘bold form’, of strong shapes created in a variety of ways, usually thrown in one piece or multiple sections before being altered, or slab built, and decorated with a brush and oxides or by cutting through wet slip to reveal the clay beneath. Mark's interest in making pots that reflect a sense of ‘place’ continues to influence his selection of clays, glazes and firing methods, and native wood ash, granite dust from local quarries and found materials such as ochre and iron slips from local pools and stream banks are included in his glaze recipes.
‘I feel incredibly privileged to have spent forty years making pots, often more by luck than judgement. It has been, and continues to be, a huge challenge to make pots that please both me and others, and I still feel that the pots that reach out and make the whole task mean anything are still to be made’. Mark Griffiths
To introduce the exhibition, Mark will hold a throwing demonstration at the Leach Pottery’s Beagle Cross site on Friday 29th May, 1 to 3pm. Contact email@example.com to reserve your place.
- Any age
Free for exhibition only, £4.50 (£4 concessions) to visit the museum