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Bernard Leach Pottery unveiled at KSA

Kootenay School of the Arts at Selkirk College (KSA) has unveiled a unique display of Bernard Leach Pottery thanks to the generosity of the late Carol Proudfoot Couch.

It is recognized world-wide that Bernard Leach was a famous British potter and is thought of as the “founder of studio ceramics in our time”. One of the great figures of 20th century craft, Leach played a crucial pioneering role in creating an identity for artist potters in Britain and around the world. He established Leach Pottery in St. Ives, Cornwall, England, in 1920.

“This is indeed a significant gift for KSA,” said Clay Instructor Garry Graham. “This showcase represents an extraordinarily important ceramic figure and era that has influenced western ceramics. Both students and the general public will now be able to see for themselves a level of craft that is purely professional in both skill and studio practice.”

The collection on display at the KSA campus in Nelson includes three pottery pieces along with a Bernard Leach authored book and his St Ives Pottery Studio catalogue. David Stryck of Stryck Design Studio fabricated the cabinet for the collection.

For practicing potters and people interested in pottery, this presents an opportunity to visit KSA and admire the work of Bernard Leach and St. Ives Pottery. “There are many who may have grown up inspired by his writing and style of work but have never actually been up close to the ‘real thing’,” said Graham.

The unveiling was an appropriate way to recognize the big-hearted wishes of Carol Proudfoot Couch, who entrusted Selkirk College to preserve and display the collection at the KSA campus for ceramic education.

As an art teacher at Stanley Humphries Secondary School in Castlegar (1957-1982), Carol Proudfoot Couch was well known for her enthusiastic personality, particularly when it involved supporting and collecting the arts, both locally and on her many travels abroad.

For more information on the Clay program at KSA, please visit www.selkirk.ca/programs/ksa or call 250.352.2821.