Magazine article Ceramics Art & Perception

Phil Rogers: A Portfolio

Magazine article Ceramics Art & Perception

Phil Rogers: A Portfolio

Article excerpt

With contributions by: David Whiting Sebastian Blackie Angela Fina Sherman Hall


Published by Goldmark, 2012

ISBN 978-1-909167-00-1

Price: [pounds sterling]25

THIS BOOK LOOKS AND FEELS LIKE A RETROSPECTIVE volume and that is just what it is. Goldmark publish handsome books that are generously illustrated; the detailed attention they give to design, lay-out, colour matching, typography and photography is exceptional. Phil Rogers is fortunate to have been the one selected for Goldmark's first hardback of this kind. The 111 page book is beautiful enough for a coffee table and informative enough to be an essential part of each of Rogers' collectors' libraries. This balance is achieved by giving some 20 of the pages to four critics and supporters but the rest is dominated by Rogers' voice and vision.

Rogers has selected 13 pots to help us understand his sources of inspiration. From a 13th/14th century apothecary's jar via Shoji Hamada, Bernard Leach to Richard Batterham, there are no particular surprises. Each chosen source has a direct link to his current work; they emphasise his lineage from the mediaeval and oriental to selected 20th century studio potters. The shape of this book may have been influenced by Bernard Leach's A Potter's Portfolio (Lund Humphries 1951) which does confine itself to illustrating inspiring pots, an introduction and comments on the chosen works. I was left feeling curious as to what, beyond pots, inspires Rogers.

The first five sections are written by the potter and the photographs throughout the book are by him as well. He begins his personal history at Swansea Art College in 1970 where he taught himself to throw; via school teaching to his first kiln based at home. He closely observed the work of other potters but did not undertake an apprenticeship. …

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