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Richard Jacobs in the UK

October and November 2007



Richard Jacobs, academic, collector and curator from the USA, will be in the UK to talk about his new book 'Searching for Beauty' at the following events:

School of Art and Design, Wolverhampton University - 16.30pm   24 October

'Beauty as Idea and Experience: The Rehabilitation of an Aesthetics of Sentimentality'

Oxford Ceramics Fair , St Edward's School, Oxford - 2pm   27 October

Richard Jacobs in conversation with David Jones, potter and author

The School of Art and Design, University of Wales in Cardiff - 2pm   1 st November

Richard Jacobs in conversation with Dr Jeffrey Jones, author of the forthcoming book Studio Pottery in Britain 1900 - 2005 (A&C Black)

Bluecoat Display Centre , 54 Hanover Street, Liverpool - 2.30pm   7 th November

Richard Jacobs in conversation with Lionel Burman

University College for the Creative Arts, Farnham - 10am-12.30pm   14 November

' Beauty as Idea and Experience: The Rehabilitation of an Aesthetics of Sentimentality'

Contemporary Ceramics , 7 Marshall Street, London - 5-7pm   15 November

Launch and book-signing. Richard Jacobs has visited Contemporary Ceramics several times over the past twenty-five years.


hub , National Centre for Craft and Design, Sleaford, Lincs - 3 pm 19 November

Richard Jacobs in conversation with Joanna Howells, author and potter

in conjunction with the exhibition 'The Pot, the Object and the Vessel'

Royal College of Art , London - 10.30am 22 November
Talk and seminar with staff and students of the ceramics and glass department.

Available from 24 th October 2007

Searching for Beauty

Letters from a Collector to a Studio Potter

Richard Jacobs

Published by Kestrel Books Ltd, Wales, UK.  

352 pages. Hardcover.

ISBN 0-9548840-6-X

In these forty letters from a collector to a studio potter, Richard Jacobs attempts two momentous revisions to the spirit of the times.   The first is a reinstatement of the word 'beauty' as a meaningful and unapologetic description in our daily lives.

'Beauty lacks precision. At best it is a generous word, lacking the edge of irony or the more favored force of aggressive criticism. It is a dangerous word to use... There are those of us who believe in beauty and would make it the core of things, the very core of life itself. It is the one idea I do not want clarified or defined for me. Rigorous scholarship might exclude those things I favor and enjoy... I embrace beauty, but I don't want to make it special. I want beauty to remain ordinary for me, as ordinary as the daily engagements with familiar sights that form my common habits... Others may abandon the word 'beauty', but it will remain in my vocabulary.'

The second revision is attempted at a time when artists can be confronted with the question 'Are you an artist or a maker?' and elicit only confusion when their reply is, 'Both'. Theorists often perceive artist-makers as naive, unable to explain the underlying principles of their activities or understand the real meaning of what they do. In appealing to studio potters and other craftspeople to reflect on these principles and meanings, Richard Jacobs sets out to establish, beyond any fashionable doubt, the enduring integrity and significance of the craftsperson's 'whole other world of knowledge'.   

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