The pottery story in NZ goes way back to the days when the likes of Len Castle, a renowned potter, made the first self-made pot in 1947. Castle attended the Leach Pottery school for 14 months in his early years and went on to perfect his skills and now, though aging, he’s a role model to many upcoming artist potters from his bush home in Titirangi.
There’s so much to say of famous potters like Barry Bickel, Mirek Smisek, Peter Stichbury, and Hellen Mason- a senior editor of ‘The New Zealand Potter’ magazine. All these people are highly regarded for shaping and preserving the art of pottery and making it a lucrative industry to the New Zealanders.
In the last few years, the pottery revolution in NZ has had such an impact that even potters world over have had to wonder what’s happening in this isolated island nation. According to Bernard Leach, a famous potter from France, he considers New Zealand’s pottery revolution to be the most enthusiastic among the upcoming nations.
You may be tempted to think that pottery has been embraced by the old guys and New Zealanders who don’t have a decent education or with peasant living condition. You’d be mistaken because you’ll find every caliber of personality deep engraved into the fire-and-earth business. The educated elites and layman Zealander alike are taking a leading role in the industry, and some if not most have turned it to be a lifetime commitment.
The art-turned-business has been growing exponentially, and it’s making products that are sold both locally and for exports. Ceramic sculptures for interior décor and home improvement are few among the most demanded products. From kitchenware, tableware, wall arts, and other indoor pottery designs to outdoor wares like garden sculptures are all earthen products that are beautifully crafted and made in NZ.
If you want to come across an array of these and more pottery products, you should schedule your visit to one of the annual exhibitions held by different pottery and ceramics association held in various places in the nation.
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