Wednesday, 11 March 2009
The department stores have suddenly become enamoured of the handmade look in ceramics. Sainsbury’s (advert, left) has a range of Sung-type bottles in pale celadon green, a candle-holder in the shape of a pebble and an oval shaped dish that might possibly pass for studio pottery. Meanwhile the Conran shop have a cup and saucer in speckled creamy-white and black (below) that definitely takes on the ‘craft’ mantle, on offer at £19. Quite what all this means I am not sure, but where there is a market there is a supplier. Large companies are adept at appropriating ideas and goods, but need to produce it at department store prices. Studio potters cannot hope to compete quality with quantity – nor should they. What we have to do is to forcefully argue our case for products that are superior in every way.