The Ceramics Reader is an impressive collection of essays and text extracts which covers all the key areas of ceramics - both past and present. It focuses on thoughts and discussions within ceramics from the last 20-30 years in particular, but also gives the reader a broad overview of the last 100 years. One aim of the book is to introduce contemporary debates, raise awareness and stimulate thought rather than to present a closed case for examination. Consequently the essays or extracts present different approaches to give a rounded viewpoint. Beginning with essential questions such as 'Why are ceramics important?' it also considers the field of ceramics from a range of perspectives - as a cultural activity, ceramics as metaphor, where it sits within arts and crafts, within gender discussions, ceramics as sculpture, the use of ceramics as a vehicle for propaganda, ceramics within industry, within museums, and most recently as part of the 'expanded field' as a Fine Art medium and vehicle for ideas.
The texts come from a wide variety of sources - books, magazines, journals, papers presented at conferences and online journals, as well as some newly commissioned material never before published, to present an international and comprehensive look at ceramics. The book is divided into three main sections and each has a short introduction by the editors to place the chosen texts in context and explain the selections, as well as pointing to any strong threads or issues within the section and offering a point of view.
This book is ideal for ceramic students, but will also appeal to anyone wishing to gain a broad overview and understanding of the world of ceramics.