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Book Review

Teapots Transformed

Leslie Ferrin's recent publication Teapots Transformed, Exploration of an Object is a tour-de-force of contemporary teapot design. A beautifully crafted 128 page, full-color book, Teapots Transformed is written from the cognizant point of view of a gallery director specializing in the teapot medium, as Ferrin does at Ferrin Gallery in New York. While concentrating heavily on the contemporary American teapot, overseas artists are also featured, inasmuch as they are represented in North American galleries. Despite this smattering of international artists, the book could rightly be subtitled "The Contemporary American Teapot".Refreshingly devoid of overbearing background text, this work includes about a dozen pages of explanatory notes, which briefly touch upon the history of the teapot, the teapot as an American cultural item and the rise of individual expression and the contemporary American teapot, not to mention the teapot as a collectors item. Otherwise, Ferrin let's the images from 117 teapot artists speak for themselves. The photography is of the highest standard and is supported by a beautiful book design and high print quality.

Leslie Ferrin's 'Teapots Transformed'The main pictorial section of the book takes a look at teapots from American studio potteries, the influence of Yixing, sculptural and figurative teapots and the teapot as the object of conceptual art. Many familiar names meet our eyes in these pages: Robert Arneson, Dorothy Haffner, Richard Notkin and Adrian Saxe, to randomly name just a few. There are also a number of lesser known ceramists as well as artists working in metal and other media.While in no way trying to present a comprehensive history of the subject matter, Ferrin presents us with a wonderful book on the contemporary American teapot, which is rounded off nicely with a small bibliography of suggested reading.

Further Reading: Teapots Transformed - Exploration of an Object
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