Hans Coper

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Post by philpot on March 9th 2019, 7:50 pm

But ' Personal Taste' is exactly that. Personal. If this site is to truly reflect 20th century pottery, how the heck can we almost completely ignore a large number of the major practitioners of the 20th century just because we personally do not like them? Most of the market leaders are almost completely absent from this site.

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Post by dantheman on March 9th 2019, 11:10 pm

I'm just a poor pensioner Gov'. I can't stretch to a Coper or a Rie

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Post by philpot on March 10th 2019, 5:18 am

That is what Museums are for Dan. To give is 'ere Hoi Polloi a chance to see what are Rich Masters decorate their mansions with! Big Laughter
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Post by studio-pots on March 10th 2019, 9:33 am

philpot wrote:But ' Personal Taste' is exactly that. Personal. If this site is to truly reflect 20th century pottery, how the heck can we almost completely ignore a large number of the major practitioners of the 20th century just because we personally  do not like them?   Most of the market leaders are almost completely absent from this site.
                 
           

I never suggested that they should be ignored and adding the images that you have done during your visit to the Fitzwilliam yesterday is much appreciated by me and certainly adds to the depth of information this site contains. However, you have added images of finer examples Coper pots before this that I would been inclined to keep. My comments were that in my opinion this collection showed that Coper made some pretty mediocre pots too, which I am happy for anyone to agree or disagree with.


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Post by studio-pots on March 10th 2019, 9:42 am

philpot wrote:That is what Museums are for Dan. To give is 'ere Hoi Polloi a chance to see what are Rich Masters decorate their mansions with! Big Laughter


The reason that John Shakeshaft began to donate pots to the Fitzwilliam was that he was unhappy with many of the ceramic items that were being donated at the time. He considered many of these were ceramic artists that were not really collected but were lauded by the influencers. To address this, he contacted the Fitzwilliam to ask if they would accept pots that he would commission from potters that he liked to add to their collection. This they agreed to and was his way of trying to address what was happening there.


Although John had been a Cambridge don, he wasn't a rich man but spent money on pots rather than other things and was a true collector.

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Post by philpot on March 10th 2019, 10:01 am

The Fitzwilliam were choosy what they took from his collection tho. A substantial part of it ended it in huge uncatalogued multi-lots in Wooley and Wallis.
Although on the other hand, his bequest is well acknowledged in notices in the ceramics department in the Fitzwilliam.
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Post by 22 Crawford St. on March 10th 2019, 12:07 pm

Personally, I would get far more daily delight and enjoyment from x10 £500 pots than from one for £5000
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Post by NaomiM on March 10th 2019, 1:01 pm

philpot wrote:But ' Personal Taste' is exactly that. Personal. If this site is to truly reflect 20th century pottery, how the heck can we almost completely ignore a large number of the major practitioners of the 20th century just because we personally  do not like them?   Most of the market leaders are almost completely absent from this site.       
 


Absent because they are unaffordable, not because they are unappreciated. I’m sure if this was a group for Pictures then some of us would have Hockney or Picasso prints because we can’t afford the real thing. With Pottery, you can’t get a limited edition Rie or Coper, you have to collect the nearest similar thing which is a Wills and a Wastrel. If you like Bernard Leach then maybe you can at least afford a Malone or Cardew who follow the Leach tradition (some a bit too closely, maybe ;) )

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Post by studio-pots on March 10th 2019, 2:55 pm

philpot wrote:The Fitzwilliam were choosy what they took from his collection tho. A substantial part of it ended it in huge uncatalogued multi-lots in Wooley and Wallis.
Although on the other hand, his bequest is well acknowledged in notices in the ceramics department in the Fitzwilliam.


I understand that they kept an example of at least one piece of work by every potter in his collection, or at least that is what was agreed with John when he made the bequest. Also I expect they kept all of the Copers and Ries.


The other part of the agreement was to sell the rest to get funds for the Museum but I do think that they could have raised more money from it. For example, they could have tried to get say, Cheffins, the Cambridge auctioneers, to hold a specific sale of the John Shakeshaft Collection.

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Post by philpot on March 10th 2019, 3:10 pm

In particular the Copers from the Sainsbury collection in Norwich are the creme de la crème. They were major benefactors of Hans Coper, and were extremely important collectors of his work, with a personal relationship with Coper and Rie more akin to patrons than customers. It clearly shows.
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Post by philpot on March 17th 2019, 7:36 am

Probably the height of Hans Coper's career are the magnificent 6 foot candle holders commissioned in 1962 for the Basil Spence modernist Cathedral in Coventry. This was a very important building indeed. Much of Coventry City Centre, including its Cathedral had been destroyed or very badly damaged in World War 2. The building of a brand new Cathedral on very modernist lines, was a huge statement of post-war spiritual and societal renewal. This was a Huge commission for Coper, and did much to cement his reputation.
The accompanying link is a Pinterest Google image of them.
https://www.pinterest.co.uk/pin/207165651589663259/visual-search/?x=16&y=16&w=530&h=671
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Post by dantheman on March 17th 2019, 8:18 am

it's a stunningly beautiful building, well worth visiting even if it didn't have the candle holders

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Post by philpot on March 17th 2019, 8:38 am

An interesting link on the V&A website. From Design magazine, Tony Birks on a major exhibition of Hans Coper's work circa 1970.
https://vads.ac.uk/diad/article.php?title=247&article=d.247.31
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Post by philpot on March 17th 2019, 8:42 am

A link to Interpreting Ceramics which gives a detailed account of the Coventry Cathedral commission, and of 3 others in the early 60's. Well worth a read.
http://www.interpretingceramics.com/issue014/articles/05.htm
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