A distinguished craftsperson, curator, writer, teacher and broadcaster, Emmanuel Cooper first honed his skills through the production of repeat domestic tableware at his London workshops, increasingly expressing his predilection for the more nuanced making of individual artistic pieces. Emmanuel Cooper: Connections & Contrasts, a major exhibition staged at the Leach Pottery’s Cube Gallery, examines his work and career in the context of Leach, especially his relationship to Bernard Leach which began with a speculative letter from Emmanuel, in 1967, and turned full-circle, in 2003, with the publication of Emmanuel’s detailed biography of Bernard. Indeed, Emmanuel became the chronicler of the wider Leach family of potters with books on both David and Janet, making him a central figure in the recent Leach story. The exhibition features nearly 50 pots from the Emmanuel Cooper estate, alongside a small group of his production tableware, and also reveals a more personal side to Emmanuel’s work by showing some of his sketch books and other documents and drawings. There is also an additional display in the Old Pottery with images of Emmanuel throwing, in the late 1960s, alongside pictures of his workshop taken in his absence in 2012. The exhibition will remain on show until 6 September 2015 at the Leach Pottery in St Ives.
The Blogazine – Images courtesy of the estate of Emmanuel Cooper and Leach Pottery