Leach (1887-1979) was born in Hong Kong and spent over a third of
his life living in the East. He first encountered pottery while
in Japan in 1911, when attending a dinner party he was asked to
decorate a teabowl. The bowl was a raku bowl and it was soon returned
to him fired and still warm , it was this encounter that was to
set the course of his life.
Leach's pots at their best are truly wonderful, his understanding
of form, balance and pattern is without equal. A recurring theme
of his decoration is nature, birds, perhaps standing for freedom
and fauna, wild grasses and flowers all beautifully represented
and glowing with fire of life. A favourite pattern the Tree of Life
perhaps best encapsulates Leach's spiritual side as does his pilgrim
motif, which may represent Leach himself alone but not lonely, traveling
life's great journey.
by Bernard Leach written, printed and published in 1928. The pamphlet
is a precursor to the first chapter Towards a Standard which
opens Bernard Leach's seminal book A Potter's Book.
transcript of the full text
can be downloaded, HERE