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PETER RUSHFORTH ALL FIRED UP


“ Behind the work of the potter is a search for truth and beauty,

through form, glaze and function, and in rare cases, the work of the individual potter may express spiritual value. When successful, such human qualities can bring warmth to the coldness of our high tech environment Peter Rushforth

“


PETER RUSHFORTH ALL FIRED UP 12 JULY – 25 AUGUST 2013


ALL FIRED UP NATALIE WILSON Throughout Peter Rushforth’s distinguished career, serendipity has been his steady companion: from his early years growing up in the beachside suburb of Manly, through to the idyllic existence he and his wife Bobbie have found in the serene enclave of Shipley in the Blue Mountains west of Sydney. Rushforth’s choice of career as a potter – in particular his preference for the capricious nature of wood-fired ceramics – has been, in some respects, an audacious challenge to the mercurial nature of what we call fate. Born in 1920, Rushforth fondly remembers a childhood filled with warmth and love, however the disappearance of his father after a fraught return from the battlefields of the Great War, left the young boy with an abiding sense of responsibility for his mother Phyllis and sister Judy. At the age of 14, following the death of his cherished mother, he was obliged to leave high school after only one year and take up a position as a trainee theatre manager at Fox Films, where a relative had secured employment for him. During his free time, the teenager spent time reading in the local library, endeavouring to make up for his loss of a formal education.1 When Rushforth enlisted with the Eighth Division following the outbreak of World War Two, his skill as a typist and strong command of English fortuitously led him to a clerical posting at the military headquarters in Darwin, then Singapore, away from the front line. However, when Singapore fell in February 1942, his capture and subsequent internment in Changi POW Camp led to another unexpected development. Rushforth, in conversation with Christina Wilcox in the documentary Playing with clay (2010), spoke about his experiences as a prisoner-of-war: ‘Changi was the main place that you could study, whereas, in other camps, life was too harsh and survival was the main thing. But Changi had a school, it had a wonderful library and so there, there was opportunity.’ He took this “opportunity” and strove to expand his knowledge, discussing philosophy with fellow internees and tapping into a previously unexploited creative well, carving chess pieces and taking up drawing. ‘During the war we planned Utopias together.’ After the war Rushforth settled in Melbourne and resolved to fulfil a desire to ‘try and reform the world and create something better’. He enrolled in an arts course at Melbourne Technical College (now RMIT University) under the Commonwealth Reconstruction Training Scheme, spending four evenings a week taking sculpture and drawing classes. Chance led him to Allan Lowe – a studio potter influenced by Chinese high-fired stoneware – and the rest is history.


Like most Australian potters, Lowe was working in low-fired earthenware, but Rushforth’s desire to uncover the secrets of Chinese and Japanese stoneware, which he had seen in the collections of the National Gallery of Victoria, required knowledge not yet available in Australia. However, his introduction to A potter’s book, by the English potter Bernard Leach, began a lifelong commitment to the exploration and mastery of stoneware ceramic production, which embraced a fundamental belief in the central importance of beauty and functionality to his work. He built a workshop and an oil-fired kiln on a block of land he had bought at Ferntree Gully and began to hone his skills on the wheel, discovering the subtle nuances, textures and colours of stoneware. As no companies in Australia yet existed to supply potters with clays that would resist high temperatures, he started to experiment with local clays, gaining knowledge largely through trial and error. When his studies in Melbourne ended, Rushforth moved back to Sydney and in 1950 enrolled in sculpture classes under Lynden Dadswell at East Sydney Technical College (ESTC, now the National Art School). It was during this period that he began his teaching career and, fortuitously, met his future wife Jean ‘Bobbie’ Roberts, a nurse at Concord Repatriation Hospital where he taught pottery to returned servicemen. In 1951 they married and moved to Beecroft, where Rushforth built his first wood-fired kiln. That year, he became the first tenured pottery teacher at ESTC and, for the following three decades – together with Mollie Douglas, Col Levy, Shigeo Shiga, and many others – he established one of the most respected ceramics courses in Australia. From this group of dedicated individuals, the Potters’ Society of Australia was established in 1956 and Rushforth became its first president.


In his characteristically self-deprecating manner, Rushforth declared in 1973: ‘I probably haven’t had a great influence on Australian pottery ... But I’ve been concerned with people; and getting people to participate in some form of art.’2 Not only is Peter Rushforth one of the most significant pioneer studio “master” potters in the field of Australian ceramics, his impact upon generations of artists throughout this country is unquestionable. Bernard Sahm, Marea Gazzard, Peter Travers, Les Blakebrough, Janet Mansfield and Thancoupie, are just a few of Australia’s prominent ceramic practitioners who received Rushforth’s encouragement early in their careers. Rushforth’s own practice was significantly transformed after he spent five months in Japan in 1963, working alongside traditional potters at Koishiwarra village in Kyushu and studying in Mashiko under Shimaoka, who had been a pupil of Shoji Hamada. He also exhibited in Kyoto during a residency at the university. It was this experience which reinforced Rushforth’s belief in the confluence of practice and providence, stating, ‘I would subscribe to the advice often given to Japanese craftsmen – “develop an infallible technique then leave yourself open to inspiration”.’3 The forms of his work from this period onwards allowed the idiosyncratic nature of his chosen native materials and firing processes to come to the fore; a sense of freedom and spontaneity entered his work. A Churchill Fellowship enabled him to travel to Scandinavia, India, the UK and US in 1972, observing teaching practices around the world. The outcome of this trip gave Australian students opportunities to learn directly from world-renowned master potters, whom Rushforth had met during his journeys, who came to Sydney as guest tutors at ESTC. However, Rushforth himself was more strongly drawn to the Eastern traditions of China and, especially, Japan, with its centu-


ries-long unbroken ceramics tradition. Rushforth’s early work is characterised by its strong affinities to the Leach tradition, which advocated classical simplicity and purity of form. Functionality was foremost, with colour and decoration minimal. Local igneous rocks – Hornsby breccia, Prospect dolerite and Mount Gibraltar trachyte – were mixed with ash, feldspar and whiting to create earthy stoneware glazes which had many of the qualities of traditional Japanese stoneware that Rushforth and other Australian potters sought. Since the late-1960s however, Rushforth has given over to the inherent qualities of his medium and infinite variations achievable through the wood-firing process. Brilliant, lustrous colour coats the surfaces of his unique reinvention of traditional forms, which cultivate natural flaws and accidents as essential qualities, and create a dialogue between the glaze surface and body. These highly individual vessels are the canvases upon which Rushforth experiments with the glazes that he has become renowned for: notably his signature opalescent Jun (or Chun) glaze – evoking the azure mountain skies – with its myriad shades from pale pastel cerulean tints through to the deepest of indigos, achieved through an initial layer of Tenmoku glaze. Others include: Kuan (or Guan) glazes with their characteristic white crazing effect; intense copper reds; Shino’s puckered orange-peel surfaces; as well as classical Tenmoku oil spot and “hare’s fur” glazes, often utilising a wax-resist with calligraphic brushstrokes and accidental drips. After retiring as senior head of ceramics from ESTC in 1978, Rushforth moved to his mountain sanctuary Le Var, building a studio overlooking the majestic Kanimbla Valley and a dedicated gallery to display his magnificent creations. Decades of accumulated


knowledge, experience and creative vision were given unfettered freedom and enabled him to develop some of his favoured glazing techniques, in particular the heavy ash deposits achieved with long firings in the wood-fired anagama kiln, some lasting up to four days. Over the past three decades, Le Var has become a beacon for countless numbers of Rushforth’s friends and admirers who have flocked to his “open air” exhibitions displaying his most recent creations of sublime beauty. Students and professionals alike have continued to seek out his knowledge and support and are always enthusiastically welcomed by the modest and reserved potter with a warm embrace, particularly when a game of chess is on offer. Rushforth has received numerous accolades throughout his long and distinguished career, including the Order of Australia (AM) in 1985, an Australia Council Emeritus Fellowship in 1993 and, more recently, an Honorary Doctorate of Fine Art from RMIT in 2010. His work has been exhibited continuously since his first solo show in 1952, both in Australia and internationally, and his stirring commemorative Peace Vessel overlooks the contemplation deck at Hellfire Pass Memorial Museum in Thailand.

Notes 1 The following essays and interviews provide an overview of the potter’s life and career: Kenneth Hood, Peter Rushforth. National Gallery of Victoria, Melbourne, 1985; Karen Weiss, The most modest of men: Peter Rushforth – national living treasure, unpublished manuscript, 2000; Martin Thomas, Recorded interview with Peter Rushforth. National Library of Australia, Canberra, 12 November, 2005; and Jan Howlin. ‘The whole man – the life and work of Peter Rushforth’ in Australian Journal of Ceramics, vol 51 no 1 2 Alison Littlemore and Kraig Carlstrom, Nine artist potters, Jack Pollard Craftsmaster, Sydney, 1973, p 43 3 Ibid 4 The National Gallery of Victoria held the survey exhibition Peter Rushforth in 1985, curated by Kenneth Hood This essay is an edited version of an article published in Craft Arts International, no 88, 2013

With this exhibition, the first major retrospective of the artist’s work since 1985,4 serendipity has been allowed to run its course.

Blossom jar c.1980-85 stoneware, fire box effects Buckle Collection


STUDIO POTTERY PETER RUSHFORTH As mankind moves ever faster into new phases of technology, the industrial revolution with its submergence of handicrafts seems lost in the dim past of our forefathers, together with the way of life of the self-reliant craftsman. Yet, paradoxically, there is a renewed interest in things made by hand. In many countries there are emerging professionally trained artist-potters, silversmiths and weavers, as well as numerous others who pursue these activities on a part-time basis. In particular, studio pottery has attracted thousands of adherents, and colleges here and overseas find it difficult to cope with the numbers wishing to take courses in some branch of ceramics. Is this merely a nostalgic yearning for things of the past and so a retrogressive trend? Or are these activities important enough to be renewed and woven into a pattern of living in our present age? These questions have been asked since William Morris in the last century founded the ‘Arts and Crafts Movement’ and attempted to revive the crafts which the industrial revolution had virtually destroyed. He continually reminded people that the machine was robbing them of the joy of making things and he so hated machines and the type of thing that they produced that he would gladly have destroyed machines and reverted to a medieval way of life. In the latter years of his life, however, Morris realised that machines would relieve mankind of arduous and irksome work and give people leisure for creative pursuits. His revival of crafts was criticized as unrealistic and as tending to foster the dilettante producing work for a chosen few. As true as this may be, Morris nevertheless drew attention to the value of handcrafts as a human activity and to the fact that the human values found in work made by hand cannot readily be mass produced. His loud protests against the mass production of ugliness brought the whole question to the surface and contributed to the later movements which attempted to synthesize art and industry. For the potters who came under the spell of Morris and attempted to work as individual craftsmen there were formidable obstacles: one was that the traditional craft techniques had been almost lost to the techniques of mass production, and another was that pottery as an art form had declined to an extra-ordinarily low level. In many people’s minds painting had become synonymous with art and an object could only be ‘artistic’ if it was covered with the painter’s craft. The beautiful and exciting forms that could be created in wood, stone, metal and clay were often not considered as objects in themselves, and work produced in these mediums was frequently lost in meaningless ornament completely unre-


lated to the form it covered. ‘Applied art’, which may at one time have meant the application of art principles to things we make, was interpreted to mean the superficial application of ornament to utilitarian articles. In consequence, even the pots produced by hand did not appear to escape the style of the day.

countries there would be few who have not come under his influence. Nevertheless, there are many other influences beside that of the Orient; the early wares of Greece, the peasant pottery of Europe, the pottery of primitive people are also sources of influence which are being woven into the modern idiom.

A number of events, however, brought about a change in the conceptions of pottery as an art form. One was the introduction to Europe of the subdued and restrained stoneware pots made during the Sung and T’ang periods of China and some of the individually made pots of the artist-potters of Japan. Made in a time when there was no subdivision of art into categories such as ‘fine’ and ‘minor’, and men sought and expressed art values in many activities, these pots with their indescribably lovely jade-like colours and their iron-red glazes captured the imagination of many of the artist-potters. However, potters had yet to discover and develop the techniques whereby these pots were produced, and it is to the Englishman Bernard Leach that many of the Western potters are indebted for being introduced to Oriental stoneware techniques.

With this short background to the growth of studio potters, let us examine some of the work being produced today. In Scandinavia the artist-potter has had closer liaison with industry than in other countries, with the result that commercial potteries there have in many cases been revitalized and fresh impulses are entering the ceramic industry and preventing it from becoming stale and completely standardized. Compared with the work from Italy, Scandinavian ware is cold and intellectual, whereas Italian pottery is flamboyant, gay and often grotesque. In England, the work of the studio potters, influenced by the factors already mentioned, is undoubtedly more restrained. It is in Japan, perhaps, that the most lively individual pottery is being produced. In villages and cities the pottery centres have uninterrupted traditions of well over a thousand years, and young potters have the advantage of being able to absorb immense technique without leaving their home village.

After training as a potter in Japan, Leach returned to England in 1920 and established a pottery at St Ives, Cornwell, where he produced English slipware and stoneware. With him from Japan he brought a vision of craft expressing art values and being intimately connected with the everyday objects in the home. Through his lectures, books and training of apprentices, he has freely shared his experience and training. Recently he visited Australia and New Zealand and of the large number of individual potters in these

In Australia, potters have not been so fortunate as to inherit traditional techniques in using their local materials and in consequence the studio potters have been compelled to be amateur geologists, chemists and kiln builders before they have been able to get down to the business of making pots. Nevertheless, in the short history of potting in this country many of these difficulties have been overcome and in recent years there has emerged a number of artist-potters through-


is about living. The Buddhist philosophy lives for now. “IfPottery you love people and life it comes out in your work. There are so many techniques to explore or improve on – each firing is a new challenge.___

Peter Rushforth, 1988 [20 x 20 Crafts in Society 1970 – 1990] BELOW: Large Blossom Jar c.2000 stoneware, Jun glaze 32cm height ; 29cm diameter Thor Beowulf collection

out Australia, their techniques and styles ranging from low-fired earthenware to high-fired stoneware. In judging this pottery a knowledge of the material and techniques that are being used helps to give a greater insight into the subject, so a brief description is given here of those employed by local potters. Part of the skill and art of the potter lies in his ability to select materials from the earth, refine and blend them so as to create clay bodies and glazes with suitable colours and textures. It is common knowledge that pots are made from clay, but the term clay is simply a description for rock which is decomposed and has become plastic. As the rocks from which clay is formed vary in composition, it is natural that clay itself will vary according to the nature of the igneous rock from which it derives. Pure white clays can usually be fired to immense temperatures before they vitrify and become dense, whereas terracotta clays which are coloured by finely dispersed iron become hard at a relatively low temperature. The pottery made from such clays is known as earthenware and it is porous unless covered with a good glaze. But long before man had discovered how to make a glaze he was making earthenware pots and decorating them with fine solutions of other coloured clays which are called slips. The slips are usually limited to the colours terracotta, white and black, the last colour being obtained by adding manganese to the red clay. So, with this limited colour scheme and his clay basic material, the potter has through the ages been able to produce an astonishing variation of pot forms with an equally astonishing variation of pot forms with an equally astonishing variation of patterns, textures and colours. Deposits of terracotta clay are found throughout Australia, and particularly in and around Sydney, but to use the clay it has to be sieved in a wet stage to remove the stones and then

worked up into a putty-like consistency. Many Sydney potters who use this clay still use the simple technique of forming their pots by coiling the clay and either leaving the coils as texture or beating the pot with a spatula to smooth the surface. In some cases the pots are given additional texture by incised lines filled with either white slip or white glaze. A second technique used by local potters is to fire the pot once, then cover it with a white opaque glaze and paint over the glaze with a colouring oxide. This ‘majolica’, or ‘tin glaze’, technique is used widely in Europe, and in Australia is practised by Rachel Roxburgh, Margaret Tuckson and Maria Gazzard of Sydney and R Preston and P Dunn of Warrandyte, Victoria. A third type of pottery is stoneware, made by firing the ware to high temperature. Only certain clays with withstand the stoneware temperatures of 1300°C. The advantage of this ware is that the material is strong


I have experimented for four years with local sandstones and “rocks for the texture of the articles I’ve made, and I’ve substituted them for silica and coloring oxides in the glaze. It is from these local materials that I believe the character of Australian pottery will evolve._

Peter Rushforth, 1955 [Australian Women’s Weekly]

and non-porous and at stoneware temperature rock materials can be used as natural glazes. When these glazes are fired in a smoky or reduced atmosphere, transmutations and subtleties of colour are obtained which are unobtainable by other means. The pale grey-blue and grey-green celadon galzes perfected by the Chinese in the Sung Dynasty, and the rich ironblack ‘Tenmoku’ glazes with flashes of blue produced in China and Japan, are traditional stoneware glazes. Stoneware potters in Australia are producing glazes made from local dolerite, granite, feldspar and other igneous rocks, and the kilns used vary from small electric kilns to wood, coke and oil fired kilns. The manner in which a kiln is fired is another factor determining the quality and character of the pot. An alternating smoky and clear flame, technically known as a reduced and oxidised atmosphere, will produce a terracotta with black colours when using red clay, and when using stoneware clay it will vary from buff to grey depending upon the amount of reduction. The colours of the glaze also vary considerably according to the atmosphere of the kiln. Glazes which are green when oxidized turn red when reduced, and brown glazes in a clear flame turn blue or green when reduced.

ing have evolved over thousands of years and many are best learnt by seeing someone else working at his craft. Today, when the master and apprentice system has almost died out, art colleges are keeping alive many of the personal skills which were once acquired in the studios and workshops of master craftsmen and artists. Unless one is fortunate enough to find an experienced potter with whom to work, the art colleges offer the only means of studying ceramics, except for some scientific aspects which can be studied at the University of New South Wales. It may be seen from the foregoing that pottery can start by being very simple and end up being very complex. As Sir Herbert Read says, ‘it is the simplest because it is the most elemental; it is the most difficult because it is the most abstract’. He says further, ‘Judge the art of a country, judge the fineness of its sensibility, by its pottery; it is a sure touchstone’. First published in The Etruscan, vol 11 no 3, March June 1962 Reproduced here with permission of the artist

It will be seen, then, that the study of pottery opens many doors, the student inevitably finding himself introduced to a number of subjects. For those learning studio pottery the main considerations are learning to manipulate the clay and a concept of what can be done with a particular pottery technique. It is of little use trying to make a refined porcelain cup from rough earthenware clay, or to make a majolica glazed vase into a celadon glazed pot; each firing range has its own selection of colours and textures. To attempt to learn pottery in isolation would impose severe obstacles on the student. The techniques of pottery mak- OPPOSITE: Spherical vase c2010 stoneware, tenmoku and Jun glazes, wax resist Private Collection


Vase c1991 stoneware, tenmoku and Jun glazes, wax resist decoration 28 cm height; 26 cm diameter Marian Howell Collection


THE GOOD POT PETER RUSHFORTH There never appears to have been an age when man did not seek what he considered to be a ‘good life.’ His aims are never likely to be uniform or constant, he may aim to be a hedonist, an aesthete, a celibate or a polygamist; he may think that to live in the mountains is necessary or he may think that the stimulus of the inner city is preferable, or he may simply think that a state of leisure will lead him to the promised land. It is this search that underlies the current craft movement – people have seen crafts as a means of fulfilling certain human needs that would be difficult to fulfil in other occupations. Alongside the benefits of science we have seen the dehumanizing of life styles by the machine, a new technology, which has often left workers as appendages to machines or replaced them altogether. Crafts are amongst the limited number of activities left in our community, which allow people to develop their instincts to create and construct at a personal level. But once involved in a craft, in my case potter, one becomes more concerned with what is a ‘good pot’ than consciously pursuing life styles. What is considered a ‘good pot’ however, may vary as much as the many life styles that people pursue. To many, classical symmetry could be the ultimate in pottery and the slumped uneven pots often admired by the Tea-Masters would be discarded as failures – yet the Iga potters are ecstatic over some of the sagged pots with their accidental kiln effects that emerge from their kilns and they would regard the symmetrical pots of the West as boring. Much as been written by the Japanese on the natural qualities they admire in pots. ‘The cracks produced in the firing are in perfect keeping with the powerful modelling and suggestive of the works of nature.’ Expressed so well in senryu verse – ‘Western food Every damned plate Round’ Aesthetics can never be stratified, there must always be freshness, vitality and a searching for new values. A beautiful pot reproduced many times loses its uniqueness and often its power to attract. No doubt a beautiful woman if cloned several times would lose her appeal. In training itself, dogmatism looms up with such statements as, ‘Workshop training is superior to college training’ or ‘Ideas ore more important than techniques.’ Such statements make little sense unless qualified with information on the quality of the teachers or master-craftsmen, and of the latter statement neither ideas nor techniques are worth much in isolation from one another. The contrasts are endless. Huxley once wrote that a good tradition may be defined as the ghosts of good dead artists dictating to bad living artists – but generations of bad artists may dictate to other bad artists. In a manifesto of PG Pavis it is argued that history has been a burden to the artist


and an interference to creative activity. Pavia asserts that the modern artist must embark on a procedure of non-history, which is basically a method of spontaneity – pure experience abolishes and transcends the dialectic of cause of effect. But except for the genius I think this rather a dangerous direction to take. The whole of our culture depends on what values can be passed on from generation to generation. In pottery it is left to the colleges to accept this challenge, for the few master-craftsmen in this country could make little impression on the vast number of people wishing to learn some aspects of ceramics. Again, the aims of training potters will vary from place to place’ whilst some teachers will pursue accuracy in throwing and professional finish, others stress the psychological value of craft activity and will consider that craft activity is its own reward and the discovery that comes with doing is more important than the finished result. Confronted with such opposing attitudes and aims it is natural that many students entering the craft world are confused. Myself, I have always been impressed with the advice of the Zen teacher ‘Develop an infallible technique and then leave yourself open to inspiration,’ but firstly I think it is prerequisite to training to sort out your direction and aims, from the flood of influences to which we are exposed. Is it to be a philosophy of beauty linked to function, or the innovative and conceptual approach divorced from function, or the sculptor’s approach or a decorator’s approach? It is obvious that there cannot be rigid rules in defining a ‘good pot.’ Even in the traditional workshops of Japan where one is bound by rules of function and style usually related to the Tea Ceremony and everyday use, there is room for innovation and new discoveries, but changes are the result of a growth of ideas that have evolved over a long period of time. When I first went to Japan I found that with the many hun-

dreds of glaze tests I had previously made and often discarded there were examples not so dissimilar that had been used creatively for centuries, there were other glazes that required immense expertise to produce; but the point is that these glazes and the pots on which they were used expressed an astonishing range of contrasting approaches to aesthetics. One soon realized that woven into the Japanese ceramic tradition were thousands of strands, and weaving it together was the influence of the Tea-Masters and Zen Buddhism. Generation after generation of potters and laymen had pondered over the qualities that they considered made a good pot. Bernard Leach and Dr Suzuki have written superbly on the concepts that influenced Japanese craftsmen – human qualities expressed in the things we make, tranquillity expressed by the character jaku ‘to be quiet,’ or ‘to be lonely,’ often having spiritual significance, transcending birth and death. The idea of sabi is suggestive of age, a search for harmony, gentleness, of suchness, of naturalness. Concepts of shibusa, which express authority, nobility and unpretentiousness. Concepts that many activities can be art, for art takes place in man, from which everything radiates and to which everything returns. As Maraini has pointed out, ‘for the Zen masters art is never decoration, embellishment; instead it is a work of enlightenment, illumination, salvation. Art is a technique for acquiring liberty.’ It may well be asked ‘What has this to do with the development of pottery in our own country?’ It seems to me that we would be absurdly parochial if we turned our back on the rich storehouse of ceramic tradition that Eastern and other cultures have to offer, but I also think that we would be absurdly dependent if we did not express something of ourselves and our environment in our own country and relate our work to our particular


needs. Having had doors opened to us to the art of the potter, the question returns to ‘What is your direction?’ Even with an awareness of the aesthetic possibilities of some ceramic techniques, it becomes a lifetime’s work to develop a limited number of glazes and use them creatively. Never at any time in our history have we had access to knowledge that will allow us to develop such glazes as Chün, Celadons, Temmukus, Ting, Sang-de-Boeuf or come close to understanding the aesthetics behind Karatsu, Hagi, Bizen, Shigaraki, Kyoto and Seto pots. From all this I have avoided the issue of defining a good pot. As I see it, it is not a matter of simulating a traditional glaze or an aesthetic from another country but of using this insight into pottery values to produce new glazes from our local material and our own philosophy to produce work that is valid to the Australian environment. If there are didactic overtones in this article, it is unintentional or if aesthetics has been overemphasized there may well be justification for the iconoclasts to write anti-art and anti-beauty manifestos, but I am only too willing to admit that we must always be seeking new horizons and that change is inevitable, as Yeats has written: –

‘All changed, changed utterly: A terrible beauty is born’ First published in Pottery in Australia, vol 18 no 1, Autumn 1979 Reproduced here with permission of the artist


ABOUT THE HAND MADE OBJECT AND ART There is an instinctive drive in all of us to be creative and to make and construct. Without it I think we’d live a very stark, and could be even brutal, type of existence. That’s why I think the arts have been so important because, let’s face it, you can manufacture a bowl much quicker than you can make a tea bowl by hand. But the tea bowl may reflect tranquillity, and it may reflect lovely natural qualities. A tremendous amount of thought has been given to why we would want to pursue a handcraft in a highly technical, industrial age, and mass production gives us certain advantages but if it takes over entirely we then live in a machine environment and I think if you have a machine environment you start to think in machine-like ways and this is the importance of art generally, because art introduces us to human values. Peter Rushforth to Christina Wilcox, 2005


BIOGRAPHICAL NOTES


BIOGRAPHICAL NOTES 1920 Peter Frederick Rushforth born Manly, 4 Dec, only son of Cyril Rushforth and Phyllis Kellam and brother of sister, Judy 1935 Death of the artist’s mother, Phyllis 1936 Left school and took up a position as a trainee theatre manager at Fox Films 1940 Enlisted in the 8th Division, Australian Imperial Forces (AIF) at Paddington, 4 Nov 1941 Embarked for Malaya, 17 Sep Disembarked in Singapore, 17 Oct 1942 Singapore falls and Rushforth captured by the Japanese, 15 Feb and sent to Changi POW Camp Declared Missing in Action, 11 Apr 1943 Moved to the Thai-Burma railway then transferred to Changi until the end of the war 1945 Boarded the Speaker from Manila, bound for Australia, 1 Dec Discharged from the AIF on compassionate grounds, 28 Dec 1949 1947- Studied under the Commonwealth Reconstruction Training Scheme (CRTS) at Melbourne Technical College (now RMIT University), spending four evenings a week, taking sculpture and drawing classes 1948 Awarded the Ceramic Prize in the CRTS student exhibition 1949 Established first studio at Ferntree Gully, Victoria Began teaching pottery to returned servicemen at Yaralla Military Hospital (Concord Hospital), Sydney, and met Jean ‘Bobbie’ Roberts 1950 Enrolled at the National Art School (NAS), studying sculpture and drawing part time 1951 Married Jean ‘Bobbie’ Roberts at Frankston, Victoria, 18 Aug Moved into first home at Beecroft and built first wood fire kiln Appointed Teacher of Ceramics at NAS 1952 Daughter Elizabeth born in Sydney, 19 May


First solo exhibition held at David Jones’ Walk Gallery, Sydney, opened 24 Mar

1953 Daughter Susan born in Sydney, 23 July 1955 Awarded ‘Diplome D’Honneur’ by the Academie Internationale de la Ceramique at the First World Congress of the International Academy of Ceramics, Cannes, France 1956 Founding member with Mollie Douglas, Ivan Englund, and Ivan McMeekin of the Potters’ Society of NSW (later the Potters’ Society of Australia); Rushforth appointed President Daughter Janet born in Sydney, 14 June 1957 Awarded First Prize for Pottery (Stoneware or porcelain; hand-built, thrown, press moulded or cast) and Second Prize for Pottery (Earthenware, stoneware or porcelain; made only of materials of Australian origin) at the Royal Agricultural Society of NSW exhibition (RAS) 1958 Exhibited in the inaugural exhibition of the Potters’ Society of NSW at Macquarie Galleries, Sydney, Nov 1959 Awarded Diploma Status, Public Service Board of NSW Delivered Ceramic Extension lectures, University of NSW 1960 Awarded First Prize for Pottery (Stoneware or porcelain; hand-built, thrown, press moulded or cast; decorated in any manner, or undecorated); Special Prize for Pottery (Most Meritorious exhibit); and Third Prize for Pottery (Earthenware, stoneware or porcelain; made only of materials of Australian origin, and prepared and fired by the exhibitor) at the RAS exhibition 1962

Established certificate course in ceramics at East Sydney Technical College, together with fellow teacher, Mollie Douglas Judged (with Doris Townsend) Annual Art Exhibition Hunter’s Hill, May Selection Committee with Mollie Douglas and Ivan Englund, Potters’ Society Second Exhibition, Nov Delivered ‘Art and the potter’ at the Art Gallery of New South Wales, 15 Nov Commonwealth Art Advisory Board purchased two stoneware pots

1963

Appointed Head Teacher Ceramics, NAS Study tour of Japan and worked with Hamada’s pupil, Shimaoka, in Mashiko Worked in Kyoto and Kyushu and has work fired in Kanjiro Kawai’s kiln which is later exhibited in Australia Awarded First Prize for Pottery (Stoneware or porcelain; hand-built, thrown, press moulded or cast; decorated in any manner, or undecorated); Special Prize for Pottery (Most Meritorious exhibit); and Second Prize for Pottery (Earthenware, stoneware or porcelain; made only of materials of Australian origin, and prepared and fired by the exhibitor) at the RAS exhibition Australian and New Zealand Pottery Touring Exhibition of State Art Galleries Delivered ‘Growth of studio pottery’ at the Royal Art Society, 15 May Addressed the Ikebana International Delivered ‘Trends in studio pottery’ at the Art Gallery of New South Wales, Nov Delivered ‘Potters in Japan’ for the Potters’ Society of NSW at ESTC, 15 Nov Participated in 9th International Exhibition of Ceramic Art, Smithsonian Institute, Washington, USA, Sep Delivered ‘Impact of studio pottery of Australia’ at the Cherry Festival Art Prize, Young, NSW

1964

Appointed first Patron, Ceramic Study Group, Sydney Awarded First Prize for Pottery (Stoneware or porcelain; hand-built, thrown, press moulded or cast; decorated in any manner, or undecorated); Special Prize for Pottery (Best exhibit in pottery classes); and First Prize for Pottery (Earthenware, stoneware or porcelain; made only of materials of Australian origin, and prepared and fired by the exhibitor) at the RAS exhibition, Mar Delivered ‘Pottery and Japanese gardens’ for Folklore Society, Sydney, Apr Addressed the Ikebana International, May Judge, Ceramic Section, Waratah Festival, Sydney, Oct


1965 Met Japanese potter and ‘Living National Treasure’, Shoji Hamada, during his visit to Sydney, Mar Participated in Commonwealth Arts Festival, Great Britain, Oct Included in 10th International Exhibition of Ceramic Art, Smithsonian Institute, Washington, USA, Oct 1966 Taught summer school courses at NAS, Jan Judged Rural Bank Student Competition, Oct Awarded Potters Cottage Prize, Potters Cottage, Warrandyte, Victoria, Oct 1967

Taught stoneware course at Potters’ Society of NSW summer school, NAS, Jan Awarded Churchill Fellowship, Mar, and visited potteries in India, UK, and USA to study aspects of education in ceramics and studio workshop practice Included in Craft Association of Australia inaugural exhibition, Sep

1968

Included in ‘Fifteen Australian potters’, Adelaide Festival, Mar Delivered ‘Overseas study tour’ lecture, Ceramic Study Group, Sydney, July Awarded Thrumster Village Pottery Prize, Aug Delivered ‘The artist potter overseas’, The Workshop Arts Centre, Sydney, Oct

1969

Established pottery studio at Church Point, Sydney, and moved family from Beecroft Directed summer school on ‘Stoneware’, NAS, Jan Delivered ‘Japanese pottery’, Ceramic Study Group, Sydney, May Delivered ‘Aspects of overseas pottery’, Women Graduates Association, University of Sydney, June Lectured & gave demonstrations at ‘ASILWA 5: a symposium for studio potters’ for Ceramic Study Group, Sydney, Oct

1970 Special Method Tutor at NAS Spring School, Melbourne Ceramic Group, Aug 1972

Appointed Senior Head Teacher Ceramics, NAS Lectured and gave demonstrations at Potters’ Society Summer School, NAS, Jan Winner, Lindeman’s Wine Prize, Ceramic Section at the RAS exhibition, Mar Included in exhibition at Official Opening of Churchill House, Canberra, Apr Awarded First Prize for Ceramics – Acquisitive (Major ceramic work – container form – made and fired by the exhibitor) at the RAS exhibition Represented at the International Exhibition of Ceramics, Victoria and Albert Museum, London, June

1973

Lectured and gave demonstrations at Queensland Potters’ Association annual summer school, Jan Delivered ‘Design in pottery’, Crafts Association of NSW Design Seminar, Aug Winner, Bendigo Pottery Award Represented in Opera House Opening Festival Exhibition, Sydney, Oct

1974

Represented in Australian Ceramics Touring Exhibition, State and Regional Galleries, 1974–76 Awarded Australia Council for the Arts grant for Study Tour to Japan, May Judged Townsville Pottery Exhibition (Pacific Festival), June Selected for the ‘32° concorso internazionale della ceramica d’arte contemporanea’, Faenza, Italy, July Represented in Australian Section, First World Crafts Exhibition, Toronto, Canada Winner of the Bendigo Pottery Award Appointed to Australia Council for the Arts Crafts Board to assist with preparation for exhibitions in Tokyo and Sydney

1975

Adjudicator, Muswellbrook Pottery Exhibition Solo exhibition, Matsuo Gallery, Tokyo, Japan (opened by Australian Ambassador K. Shann), the first one man show of pottery to be sent to Japan from Australia under the cultural agreement of 1974 Solo exhibition, Sogo Gallery, Kobe, Japan

1976 Participated in inaugural Mayfair Ceramic Exhibition Award


Conducted workshops in Launceston, Hobart and north-west Tasmania, Aug

1977 Appointed Member of the Crafts Board Australia Council 1978 1979

Represented in ‘Australian crafts: a survey of recent work, the first national craft exhibition to tour Australia and abroad, from Feb to Dec Tutor at Potters’ Guild of South Australia workshops, 6–8 May Attends ‘First national ceramic conference for potters’, Sydney, 15–19 May Represented in ‘Australia: Clay’, Australia Council touring exhibition to USA and Canada, June Exhibition of work by past students of Peter Rushforth to celebrate Rushforth’s years of teaching, Potters’ Society Gallery, Oct Retired as Head Teacher Ceramics at ESTC after 27 years teaching Warringah Art Prize, First Prize Open Craft Section Established pottery studio at ‘Le Var’, Shipley, Blue Mountains, NSW

1980 Judge, ‘Invitation Ceramics Award’, Festival of Perth, Mar Conducted two-day workshop for Victorian Ceramic Group, Monash University, Melbourne, 4–5 Oct Opens ‘Ceramics 80’, Manly Art Gallery, Sydney, 17 Oct 1981 Conference Chairman, ‘The resourceful potter’, 2nd Australian ceramic conference for potters, Sydney, 17–23 May Invited to launch the book ‘The potter’s art’ by Janet Mansfield, Sydney, 18 May Demonstration and lecture at the Ceramic Study Group, Sydney, 23 July 1982 Judged the Potters Guild of South Australia Gold Medal Awards 1983 Addressed North Queensland Potters’ Association 10th Anniversary celebration Represented in inaugural North Queensland Ceramic Awards, Perc Tucker Regional Gallery, Townville, Oct 1985 Awarded the Order of Australia (AM) Retrospective exhibition held at National Gallery of Victoria, Melbourne, 4 Dec – 27 Jan 1986 1992 Represented in the Reserve Bank of Australia permanent collection, Reserve Bank of Australia, Martin Place, Sydney, Aug–Oct

Bowl 1990s stoneware, tenmoku and Jun glazes David Exton Collection Blossom jar c2000 stoneware, tenmoku and Jun glazes, copper red flashes Janet Rushforth Collection Blossom jar 2002 stoneware, Shino glaze Susan Rushforth Collection


1993 Australia Council Emeritus Fellowship Addressed 7th National Ceramic Conference, Adelaide, 11–17 July Judged Port Hacking Potters Group Annual Competition, Aug 1994 Emeritus Award from Visual Arts Crafts Board (VACB) Opened ‘Then & now’ exhibition, Victorian Ceramics Group, Meat Market Craft Centre, Melbourne 1995 Conducted three-day workshop, Bellingen Pottery, Bellingen, 18–20 Feb Lectures and demonstrations, Back to Back Galleries, Cooks Hill, Newcastle May Awarded First Prize Craft Section ‘Art in the Mountains, Blue Mountains Community Art Council exhibition 1996

Australian Wood-Fire Survey 1996, Strathnairn Ceramics Association in conjunction with the National Ceramics Conference, International Connections, Canberra, July Guest, ‘Mornings with Margaret Throsby’, ABC Classic FM, 9 Sep Lecture and workshop to Central West (NSW) potters

1997 Unveiling of ‘Peace Vessel’ at the opening of the Hellfire Pass Memorial, Thailand Exhibition to celebrate 50th year as a potter, Powerhouse Museum, May–June 2003 Awarded National Art School Fellowship in recognition of work and standing over the past 50 years Opens Ceramic Study Group Inc. Members’ Exhibition at Hornsby TAFE Gallery 2004 Delivered talk at St Raphael College, Leura, 21 Aug Guest presenter at Coastal Claymakers Inc. meeting, Coffs Harbour, NSW, Sep 2005

‘The Japanese Connection’, curated by Janet Mansfield and Peter Rushforth, Back to Back Galleries, Newcastle Represented in ‘The Gulgong connection, The Gallery, Mayfair, London 16–22 May, and Alpha House Gallery, Sherborne, Dorset, 28 May – 25 June with Janet Mansfield, Suzie McMeekin, Chester Nealie Alan Peascod, Owen Rye

2006 Artists’ talk at opening of Freeland Gallery, Sydney, 4 May Keynote address, artists’ forum in conjunction with ‘Encrusted’ exhibition of wood fired ceramics at Skepsi on Swanston Gallery, Melbourne, June 2007 Opens 30th consecutive annual exhibition of John Dermer’s work at Kirby’s Flat Pottery, Yackandandah, NSW 2008 Chaired a session on ‘International perspectives on Australian wood-fired ceramics’ and panel member on ‘The Masters’ session, Sturt Woodfire 2008 2010 Awarded Doctor of Fine Art honoris causa, RMIT University, Melbourne, 7 May The documentary film, ‘Playing with clay: the life and art of Peter Rushforth’, Yowie Films, directed by Christina Wilcox, launched at Dendy Cinema, Sydney, Sep 2011 ‘Peter Rushforth and Christina Wilcox’, interview by Ian McArthur and screening of ‘Playing with clay’, The Japan Foundation, Sydney, 3 Aug 2012 Screening of ‘Playing with clay’ for members of the ADFAS, Mt Vic Flicks, Blackheath, 25 June 2013 Retrospective exhibition ‘All Fired Up: Peter Rushforth, potter’ held at the SH Ervin Gallery, Sydney, 12 July – 25 Aug


Many variables in wood firing affect the final outcome of glaze quality “ and colour. These include the placement in the kiln, the type of wood, the rate of increase and decrease of temperature… Every so often there are some in a firing that do seem to have a special quality that might make them unique.___

Peter Rushforth to Grace Cochrane, 1996


ABOUT THE NATURE OF POTTERY Pottery is an art of the people. An activity that has allowed practitioners to express aesthetic values, which can enhance our daily living when we live with the work of the potter. With the freedom of expression that is possible in our present age it follows that there is a diversity of expression in the wide range of objects, which flow from the potter’s workshop. There is also a great contrast between the values expressed in the work of the individual potter with its expression of human values and work, which is mass-produced. For those of us who choose to work as studio potters producing individual work we may work in physical isolation but we are exposed to the flood of influences of past and present cultures and the environment in which we live. Eventually such influences become stepping stones to your own individual direction. Peter Rushforth


EXHIBITION HISTORY


EXHIBITION HISTORY Solo Exhibitions 1952 1955 1956 1957 1960 1962 1963 1964 1965 1967 1968 1970 1972 1973 1975 1976 1978 1979 1980 1985

David Jones’ Walk Gallery, Sydney, 24 Mar – 2 Apr ‘Peter Rushforth’, Macquarie Galleries, Sydney, 4–8 Oct ‘An exhibition of pottery by Peter Rushforth’, Turana Galleries, Newcastle, NSW 24 Mar – 9 Apr ‘Peter Rushforth’, Macquarie Galleries, Sydney, 9–21 Oct ‘Studio pottery by Peter Rushforth’, David Jones’ Art Gallery, Sydney, 14–31 Dec ‘Peter Rushforth’, David Jones’ Art Gallery, Sydney, 4–14 Nov ‘An exhibition of stoneware’, artist’s Beecroft studio, Sydney, opened 14 Dec ‘Peter Rushforth’, David Jones’ Art Gallery, Sydney, Dec ‘Studio pottery exhibition by Peter Rushforth’, Von Bertouch Gallery, Newcastle, 29 Oct – 15 Nov ‘An exhibition of studio pottery’, David Jones’ Art Gallery, Sydney, 24 Mar – 2 Apr ‘Peter Rushforth’, David Jones’ Art Gallery, Sydney, 15 July – 3 Aug The Craft Centre, Melbourne, Apr Von Bertouch Galleries, Newcastle, NSW The Craft Centre, Melbourne, 18–30 Sep The Craft Centre, Melbourne, Mar ‘Stoneware by Peter Rushforth’, David Jones’ Art Gallery, Sydney, 8–27 May Von Bertouch Galleries, Newcastle, NSW Matsuya Gallery, Tokyo, Japan (opened by Australian Ambassador K.C.O. Shann) Sogo Gallery, Kobe, Japan ‘Stoneware by Peter Rushforth’, David Jones’ Art Gallery, Sydney, 5–24 July ‘Peter Rushforth’, Bonython Gallery, Adelaide, May–June ‘Peter Rushforth’, Von Bertouch Galleries, Newcastle, 9–25 Mar ‘Peter Rushforth’, Victor Mace Fine Art Gallery, Brisbane, 2–15 Dec Le Var, artist’s workshop and gallery, Shipley The Potters’ Gallery, Sydney, 24 Nov – 6 Dec Le Var, artist’s workshop and gallery, Shipley ‘Peter Rushforth retrospective exhibition’, National Gallery of Victoria, Melbourne, 4 Dec ‘85 – 27Jan ‘86


1987 1989 1990 1991 1992 1995 1997 1999 2002 2003

‘Peter Rushforth exhibition: Chün stoneware pots’, David Jones’ Art Gallery, Sydney, 25 Sep – 15 Oct Le Var, artist’s workshop and gallery, Shipley, 24–25 Oct ‘Chün stoneware pottery’, Victor Mace Fine Art Gallery, Brisbane, 7–24 Apr ‘Peter Rushforth’, Distelfink Gallery, Melbourne, 7–20 Nov ‘Peter Rushforth: a fusion of spirit and form’, David Jones’ Art Gallery, Sydney, 21 Sep – 20 Oct ‘Peter Rushforth: stoneware pottery’, Von Bertouch Galleries, Newcastle, NSW 17 May – 9 June ‘Peter Rushforth’, Distelfink Gallery, Melbourne, 29 Oct – 30 Nov ‘Le Var, artist’s workshop and gallery, Shipley, 24–25 Oct ‘Peter Rushforth: stoneware pottery’, Von Bertouch Galleries, Newcastle, NSW 17 Mar – 9 Apr ‘New ceramics by Peter Rushforth’, Falls Gallery, Wentworth Falls, NSW, Nov ‘Peter Rushforth: celebrating 50 years as a potter’, Powerhouse Museum, Sydney, 21 Apr – Aug ‘An exhibition of stoneware by Peter Rushforth’, Le Var, artist’s workshop and gallery, Shipley, 25–26 Oct ‘Peter Rushforth: stoneware pots’, Von Bertouch Galleries, Newcastle, NSW 14 May – 6 June ‘Peter Rushforth: ceramics’, Von Bertouch Galleries, Newcastle, NSW, 5–28 July ‘Peter Rushforth: stoneware’, Beaver Galleries, Canberra, 15 Oct – 3 Nov

Joint Exhibitions (selected) 1982 1999 2000 2003 2004 2006 2007

‘Ceramics by Peter Rushforth and Mitsuo Shoji’, David Jones Gallery Sydney, 10–24 Dec ‘Peter Rushforth and Judy Cassab’, Von Bertouch Galleries, Newcastle, NSW, 14 May – 6 June ‘An exhibition of stoneware and porcelain by Shigeo Shiga and Peter Rushforth’, Le Var, artist’s workshop and gallery, Shipley, 2–3 Dec ‘Generation: Peter Rushforth ceramics, Susan Rushforth printmaking’, Manly Art Gallery, Sydney, 17Oct – 16Nov ‘Susan Rushforth: woodblock prints, Peter Rushforth: ceramics’, Coffs Harbour City Gallery, 23Sep – 6 Nov ‘Peter Rushforth and Shigeo Shiga’, boutwell draper gallery, Sydney, 24 Oct – 18 Nov ‘Timeless: Shiga Shigeo and Peter Rushforth’, Skepsi on Swanston, Melbourne, 9–27 Oct

Group Exhibitions (selected) 1948 1955 1956 1957 1958 1961 1962 1963 1964 1965

‘Fine arts exhibition’, Commonweath Reconstruction Training Scheme, Myer Emporium, Melbourne, opened 1 Nov First World Congress of the International Academy of Ceramics, Palais des Festivals, Cannes, France, 21–25 June ‘Christmas exhibition’, Johnstone Gallery, Brisbane, Dec Arts Festival of the Olympic Games, Melbourne ‘Christmas Exhibition’, Macquarie Galleries, Sydney, 4 Dec ‘Potters’ Society of NSW’, Macquarie Galleries, Sydney, 5–17 Nov ‘Studio & pre-industrial pottery’, Potters’ Society of NSW, East Syd Technical College, Sydney, 31May– 9June ‘Four arts in Australia’, first representative art exhibition prepared especially for Southeast Asia ‘Exhibition of Australian ceramics’, Canberra Art Club, 17–27 May ‘Potters’ Society of NSW’, Macquarie Galleries, Sydney, 7–19 Nov ‘Ninth international exhibition of ceramic art’, Smithsonian Institute Washington, USA, 8 Sep – 12 Oct ‘Australian and New Zealand pottery’, National Gallery of Victoria touring exhibition to Australian State Galleries, 1963–64 ‘Third exhibition’, Potters’ Society of NSW, Dominion Galleries, Sydney, 27 Oct – 7 Nov ‘Mollie Douglas, Peter Rushforth, Bernard Sahm, Derek Smith’, Von Bertouch Galleries, Newcastle, NSW, 23 Oct – 15 Nov


Commonwealth Arts Festival, Great Britain, 17 Sep – 13 Nov ‘Tenth international exhibition of ceramic art’, Smithsonian Institution, Washington, USA, 29 Oct – 13 Dec ‘Fourth exhibition’, Potters’ Society of NSW, Macquarie Galleries, Sydney, 30 Nov – 9 Dec 1967 ‘Eleven NSW potters’, Canberra Theatre Centre Gallery , 3–7 May Craft Association of Australia First Exhibition, The Australian Design Centre, 20 Sep – 4 Oct 1968 ‘Fifteen Australian potters’, Fifth Adelaide Festival of Arts 1968, Art Gallery of South Australia, Adelaide, ‘Australian potters’, Bonython Art Gallery, Sydney, 29 Apr – 15 May ‘Potters Society of Australia Christmas exhibition’, Potters Gallery, Sydney, opened 10 Nov 1969 ‘Third annual Warringah arts & crafts exhibition’, David Jones’ Art Gallery, Warringah Mall, Sydney, 15–25 Oct ‘Australian pottery’, Newcastle City Art Gallery, NSW, 22 Oct – 23 Nov 1970 ‘Acquisitions 1969’, Newcastle City Art Gallery, NSW, 11 Feb – 1 Mar 1972 ‘The eighteenth Carillon City Festival art prize 1972’, Bathurst Art Gallery, NSW, 27 Sep – 10 Oct ‘Australian ceramics’, Opera House Opening Festival Exhibition, CML Gallery, Sydney, 15 Oct – 4 Nov 1973 ‘The Bendigo Pottery Award 1973: an exhibition of pottery and ceramic sculpture’, Camberwell Civic Centre, Melbourne, 16–18 Nov ‘Peter Rushforth, Shigeo Shiga and other potters’, David Jones’ Art Gallery, Sydney Dec 1974 ‘Australian ceramics’, Australian Gallery Directors’ Conference touring exhibition, State and Regional Galleries, 1974–76 ‘World crafts exhibition’, Australian Section, Toronto, Canada, 11 June – 2 Sep 1976 ‘Australia Wood + Clay’, an exhibition arranged by the Crafts Board of the Australia Council ‘Australian ceramics’, Newcastle City Art Gallery, NSW, opened 12 Aug ‘Exhibition of ceramics by artist potters of NSW’, Cell Block Theatre, East Sydney Technical College, Sydney, opened 24 Nov 1977 ‘1976 International Bendigo Pottery Award’, Bendigo Art Gallery, Victoria, 17 July – 1 Aug 1978 ‘Australian pottery 1978’, Fremantle Arts Centre, Perth, 23 Feb – 12 Mar ‘Australia: Clay’, Crafts Board of Australia international touring exhibition, Prince JKK Federeal Building, Honolulu, Hawaii, 12 June – 17 July, then to Edmonton, Canada; Chicago, USA; and Grand Rapids, USA ‘2nd Mayfair Ceramic Award’, Crafts Council of Australia Gallery, Sydney, Oct – Nov ‘Exhibition of work by past students of Peter Rushforth’, Potters’ Society Gallery, Oct –Nov ‘Australian pottery 1900 to 1950’, Shepparton Arts Centre, Victoria ‘Australian crafts: a survey of recent work’, first national craft exhibition to tour Australia & internationally, Feb – Dec 1979 ‘Peter Rushforth, Alex Leckie, Neil Angwin’, The Craft Centre, Melbourne, 12–24 Feb ‘Recent ceramics from Australia’, organised by the Crafts Board of the Australia Council in association with the Department of Foreign Affairs of the Australian Government, Australian Embassy, Paris, 6–13 Mar 1980 ‘Acquisitions 1979’, Newcastle City Art Gallery, NSW, 6 Mar – 13 Apr 1981 ‘The bowl: Asian Zone – World Crafts Council’, a touring exhibition of bowls from Australia, Fiji, India, Japan, New Zealand, Pakistan, Papua New Guinea, the Philippines, and Thailand, Crafts Council of Australia Gallery, Sydney, 11 May – 7 June 1982 ‘Contemporary Australian ceramics’, touring exhibition to Australia, New Zealand, Canada, USA, Mexico, South Korea, Hong Kong, Philippines, Singapore, Indonesia, Sep 1982– Jan 1986 ‘Peter Rushforth, Janine King, Stephen Harrison’, Le Var, artist’s workshop and showroom, Shipley, 31 Oct – 1 Nov 1983 ‘The Asian interface’, Art Gallery of New South Wales, Sydney, 2 Sep – 2 Oct ‘The first North Queensland Ceramic Awards’, Perc Tucker Regional Gallery, Townsville, 13–29 Oct 1985 ‘Common ground: RMIT ceramics graduates 1948–1981’, Devise Gallery, Melbourne, 13–25 May ‘The first decade 1975–1985’, Victor Mace Gallery, Brisbane, 27 Aug – 11 Sep ‘The essential object 5’, Evolution of Style Series, Crafts Centre Gallery, Sydney, 14 Sep – 6 Oct 1987 ‘1986 Ceramic Award’, Meat Market Craft Centre, Melbourne, 2 Feb – 10 Mar 1988 ‘Fire and earth’, Manly Art Gallery, Sep ‘Mountains and tablelands: Peter Rushforth, Colin Levy, Graham Lupp’, Bathurst Regional Gallery,


1989 1991 1992 1994 1995 1996 1998 1999 2000 2001 2002 2003

8 June – 17 Jul; Campbelltown City Art Gallery, 19 Aug – 25 Sep ‘20 x 20 crafts in society 1970–1990’, Crafts Centre Gallery, Sydney, 27 Aug – 6 Sep, then touring to Qld & NSW ‘Australia Decorative Arts 1985–1988’, Australian National Gallery, Canberra, 22 Oct 1988 – 29 Jan 1989 ‘Australia Decorative Arts 1788–1988’, Australian National Gallery, Canberra,5 Nov 1988 – 5 Mar 1989 ‘A free hand: forty years of Australian crafts 1940s – 1980s’, Powerhouse Museum, Sydney ‘Hidden treasures: Warringah Shire Council’s acquisitive craft collection – Warringah Art Prize 1976–1988’, The Tramshed Community Arts Centre, Narrabeen, 31 Mar – 13 Apr ‘The art of the potter: Australian contemporary potters – Gwyn Hanssen Pigott, Col Levy, Ian McKay, Peter Rushforth’, David Jones’ Art Gallery, Sydney, 14 July – 12 Aug ‘Brown: 1970s ceramics from The Shepparton Art Gallery Collection’, touring exhibition, regional galleries in Victoria and New South Wales ‘Fine and decorative art’, David Jones’ Art Gallery, Sydney, 8 Mar – 27 Apr ‘Surface paradise’, an exhibition by exhibiting members of the Potters’ Society in co-operation with Manly Art Gallery and Museum, Manly Art Gallery & Museum, Sydney, 18 Oct – 4 Nov ‘Craft: Vic Health 192 National Craft Award’, National Gallery of Victoria, Melbourne, 25 Feb – 27 Apr ‘Reserve Bank of Australia Collection’, Reserve Bank of Australia, Sydney, Aug – Oct ‘The private collector: aspects of the Leach-Hamada tradition in Australia’, Craft Centre, Victoria, 10Mar–9 Apr ‘Shepparton Art Gallery Sidney Myer Australia Day Invitation Ceramic Award 1995’, Shepparton Art Gallery, Victoria, Jan ‘Ceramics survey 1969 to 1995’, Bathurst Regional Art Gallery, NSW,21 July – 27 Aug ‘Delinquent angel: Australian historical, Aboriginal and contemporary ceramics’, Museo Internazionale delle Ceramiche, Faenza, Italy, 16 Sep – 22 Oct; then touring Chicago, Tokyo, Darwin, Cairns, Melbourne, and Sydney, 1995–97 ‘Vessel: Contemporary Australian Ceramics’, in association with International Connections: 8th National Ceramics Conference ANU, Canberra School of Art Gallery, 28 June – 21 July ‘The thirty third collectors choice’, Von Bertouch Galleries, Newcastle, NSW, 27 Oct – 25 Nov ‘Director’s choice: 180th ceramic exhibition’, Distelfink Gallery, Melbourne, 16 Mar – 10 Apr ‘Kept for best: Australian fine crafts for the home 1900–1995’, National Gallery of Australia exhibition, touring 25 regional galleries in Qld, NSW, NT, WA, SA, May 1996 – Sep 1997 ‘Australian wood-fire survey 1996’, Strathnairn Ceramics Association in conjunction with the National Ceramics Conference, International Connections Canberra, July ‘The great Australian teapot’, Distelfink Gallery, Melbourne, 20 June – 22 July ‘The Roger Buckle ceramic collection’, State Craft Gallery, Metro! Craft Centre, Melbourne, 25–30 Aug ‘Ceramics, prints, works on paper by Peter Rushforth, Susan Rushforth and John Caldwell’, Gallery Lane, Leura, NSW, 10–25 Oct ‘The 36th collectors choice’, Von Bertouch Galleries, Newcastle, NSW, 25 Oct – Nov ‘Mini Woodfire Conference’, Qdos Main Gallery, Lorne, Victoria, 29 Apr – 3 May ‘Twenty five years on: the past’, Victor Mace Fine Art Gallery, Brisbane, 3–24 June ‘John Caldwell and friends’, Trinity Delmar Gallery, Sydney, 3–19 Aug ‘Fired’, exhibition curated by First Year Visual Arts students Arts Gallery, University of Southern Queensland, Brisbane, Sep – Oct ‘Contemporary ceramics & Shodo exhibition’, Daimaru, Melbourne, 3–17 Sep ‘Ceramic connections: decorative and functional ceramics from 24 master potters from Western Sydney & Blue Mountains with paintings from Lewers Bequest Collection’, Penrith Regional Gallery, NSW, May – June ‘Australian icons: an exhibition of 22 works from Victorian Ceramic Group Collection’, Phyllis Palmer Gallery, La Trobe University, Bendigo, 1 – 31 Aug ‘Cover story: 40 years of covers of Pottery in Australia’, Watson Art Centre, Canberra, June ‘Connections: 45 years of creativity’, Potters Gallery, Victoria, 4–26 Oct ‘30 years of collecting’, an exhibition showing selected works from Greg Daly’s collection, Orange


2004 2005 2006 2007 2008 2009 2010 2012

Regional Gallery, NSW, 25 Oct – 29 Nov ‘The forty first annual collectors choice’, Von Bertouch Galleries, Newcastle, NSW, 31 Oct – 29 Nov ‘50 years of Australian ceramics’, Newcastle Region Art Gallery, NSW, 28 Nov 2003 – 8 Feb 2004 ‘Celebrating the Master’, Skepsi on Swanston, Melbourne, 3 Feb – 23 Mar ‘Stepping out’, Cudgegong Gallery, Gulgong, NSW, 13 May – 7 June ‘Collector’s choice by Victor Mace’, Toowoomba Regional Art Gallery, Qld, 12 Nov 2004 – 2 Jan 2005 ‘Eighty and over’, Taylor Galleries, Sydney, 18 Nov – 5 Dec ‘Dining in the gallery’, Autumn Exhibition, Cudgegong Gallery, Gulgong NSW, Mar ‘Australian Woodfire Survey 2005’, Watson Art Centre, ACT, 24 Mar – 25 Apr, part of ‘Raw heat, hot clay: a celebration of ceramics across Canberra’, in association with Gundaroo Woodfire, Apr ‘The Gulgong connection: ceramics by six leading Australian potters’, The Gallery, London, England, 16–22 May; Alpha House Gallery, Dorset, England, 28 May – 25 June ‘Transformations: the language of craft’, National Gallery of Australia, Canberra, 11 Nov 05 – 29 Jan 06 ‘Encrusted’, Skepsi on Swanston, Melbourne, 1–24 June ‘Japanese art and Australian ceramics: a continuing discourse’, Freeland Gallery, Sydney, 7–31 July ‘The crafted object: 60s – 80s, National Gallery of Australia, Canberra, 26 Aug – 10 Dec ‘Local hands’, Craft ACT Members Exhibition, Craft & Design Centre, Canberra,16 Nov – 17 Dec ‘Three tenors of ceramics: Peter Rushforth, Greg Daly, Alan Peascod’, Cudgegong Gallery, Gulgong, NSW, 24 Nov 2006 – 5 Feb 2007 ‘Fired up!’, Art Space, Box Hill Town Hall, Victoria, 23– 29 June ‘Visual – tactile – conceptual: Peter Rushforth, Anthony Brink, Simon Reece’, Freeland Gallery, Sydney, 8 Nov– 9Dec ‘The Masters’, Sturt Gallery, Mittagong, NSW, 18–21 Apr ‘From the earth’, Deakin University Art Gallery, Victoria, 16 Apr – 24 May ‘Gift of Rod Fyffe’, Bendigo Art Gallery, 19 Apr – 25 May ‘Lines of fire: armed forces to art school’, National Art School, Sydney,10 July – 13 Aug ‘Salute – a salute to Australian ceramics’, Fusions Gallery, Brisbane, Oct ‘Between seasons’, Cudgegong Gallery, Gulgong, NSW, Nov ‘Mingei – a way of making, a way a living: Peter Rushforth, Mary Taguchi, Masayuki Ogura’, Wood Works Gallery, Bungendore, NSW, 6 June – 12 July ‘Ceramics from a distinguished collector’, Peter Pinson Gallery, Sydney, 17 June – 4 July ‘One step backwards, two steps forward: twenty leading Australian woodfirers’, Maestro Gallery, Sydney, 15–20 July ‘Peter Rushforth: a tribute exhibition’, Freeland Gallery in association with Peter Pinson Gallery, Sydney, 27 Oct – 6 Nov ‘Formed: selected works from the Etta Hirsh ceramics collection’, Bundoora Homestead Art Centre, 22 Oct – 28 Nov ‘Engaging form: exemplary Australian ceramics’, Skepsi @ Montsalvat, The Barn Gallery, Montsalvat, Victoria, 1–16 Sep

Awards 1948 1967 1973 1976 1985 1993 2010

Sir William Angliss Award for Pottery, Commonwealth Reconstruction Scheme Churchill Fellowship Bendigo Pottery Award (Best Ceramic Piece) Mayfair Ceramic Award Order of Australia (AM) Australia Council Fellowship Doctor of Fine Art, honoris causa, RMIT University


Collections Art Gallery of New South Wales, Sydney Art Gallery of South Australia, Adelaide Art Gallery of Western Australia, Perth Australian Embassy, Tokyo, Japan Australian Embassy, Washington DC, USA Bathurst Regional Art Gallery, NSW Ceramics Study Group, Sydney Ceramics Victoria Inc, Melbourne City of Whitehorse Art Collection, Victoria High Court of Australia, Canberra KenDon Museum of Australian Ceramics, Melbourne Latrobe Valley Arts Centre, Melbourne Manly Art Gallery, Sydney Mildura Art Gallery, Victoria National Gallery of Australia, Canberra National Gallery of Victoria, Melbourne Newcastle Art Gallery, NSW Orange Regional Art Gallery, NSW Parliament House, Canberra Perc Tucker Regional Gallery, Townsville Powerhouse Museum, Sydney Queen Victoria Museum and Art Gallery, Launceston Queensland Art Gallery, Brisbane Reserve Bank of Australia, Sydney Rockhampton Art Gallery, Queensland Shepparton Art Gallery, Victoria Tasmanian Museum and Art Gallery, Hobart Toowoomba Art Gallery, Queensland UNESCO Gallery, Geneva, Switzerland University of New South Wales, Sydney Private collections in Australia and Internationally

Bowl c2000 stoneware, tenmoku and Jun gla

Tea bowl c1976 stoneware, iron glaze exterior, limestone glaze interior 8.3 cm height; 13.5cm diameter Tea bowl c1976 stoneware, feldspathic glaze with iron brushwork decoration 9.5 cm height; 16 cm diameter Bowl 1990s stoneware, tenmoku and Jun glazes, wax resist decoration 10.5 cm height; 25 cm diameter ALL Lance Blundell and Julie Sim Collection


azes 6.5 cm height; 15.5 cm diameter Lance Blundell and Julie Sim Collection

Tea bowl 1980s stoneware, celadon glaze with iron brushwork decoration 10.8 cm height; 14.5 cm diameter Bowl 1980s stoneware, natural ash deposits 8.5 cm height; 15.5 cm diameter Bowl 1980s stoneware, ash glaze 9 cm height; 17 cm diameter ALL Lance Blundell and Julie Sim Collection


POTTERY My aim is to create forms that have life and vitality, colours and textures that are unique to earth materials fired to high temperatures in such a way that glazes and forms are related. The inner value of such work strangely reveals not only qualities of beauty inherent in the materials and the processes, but also reveals much of the maker. Pots may evoke qualities of the environment where the potter lives. Form may speak of gentleness, of harmony, of peace or otherwise. At Shipley, the valley and the mountains are an ever changing scene of mists, clouds, blue sky and sometimes, snow and rain. To me the scene is exquisitely beautiful. Each pot in this exhibition has something different to express.

Peter Rushforth 1991


BIBLIOGRAPHY PETER RUSHFORTH


BIBLIOGRAPHY PETER RUSHFORTH Selected writings by Peter Rushforth ‘Studio pottery’, The Etruscan, vol 11 no 3, Mar–June 1962, pp 8–11 ‘The Potters’ Society of NSW’, Pottery in Australia, vol 1 no 1, May 1962, pp 2–3 ‘Impressions of Folk Art and Mashiko’, Pottery in Australia, vol 2 no 2, Oct 1963, pp 9–10 ‘Takeichi Kawai’, Pottery in Australia, vol 3 no 1, May 1964, p 18 ‘Pottery in Australia’, Art and Australia, vol 3 no 3, Dec 1965, pp 192–198 ‘Training of artist potters in the West, Pottery in Australia, vol 7 no 1, Autumn 1968, pp 8–13 ‘Dangers of lead’, Ceramic Study Group Newsletter, no 58, Apr 1971, pp 3–4 ‘Lead glazes, Pottery in Australia, vol 12 no 1, Autumn 1973, pp 39–40 ‘Wanda Garnsey’, Pottery in Australia, vol 13 no 1, 1974, pp 4–5 ‘Derek Smith and Doultons’, Pottery in Australia, exhibition review, vol 14 no 2, 1975, p 61 ‘The Bizen pots of Col Levy’, Craft Australia, exhibition review, no 3, 1977, p 49 ‘The good pot’, Pottery in Australia, vol 18 no 1, Autumn 1979, pp 3–5 ‘Bernard Leach’, Pottery in Australia, vol 18 no 1, Autumn 1979, p 47 ‘Bendigo Pottery’, Craft Australia, book review, no 4, Summer 1980, p 53 ‘Twenty-five years’, Pottery in Australia, vol 20 no 2, Nov/Dec 1981, pp 3–4 ‘Building and firing the anagama kiln’, Pottery in Australia, vol 24 no 2, May 1985, pp 41–43 ‘The art of the potter’, Pottery in Australia, vol 27, no 1, Feb 1988, pp 4–7 ‘The Japanese connection’, Pottery in Australia, Bicentennial edition, vol 27 no 2, May 1988, pp 10–15 ‘Zen and the art of woodfiring’, Pottery in Australia, vol 28 no 2, May 1989, p 26 ‘A tribute to Ian McKay’, Ceramics: Art and Perception, no 2, 1990, p 45 ‘A tribute to Ivan McMeekin OAM’, Pottery in Australia, vol 32 no 3, Spring 1993, pp 19–20 ‘A tribute to Joan McPherson 1918–1996’, Pottery in Australia, vol 36 no 1, Autumn 1997, p 79 ‘Cover story 1962–2001’, Pottery in Australia, vol 40 no 3, Sep 2001, p 36

Monographs Kenneth Hood, Peter Rushforth: a retrospective, exhibition catalogue, National Gallery of Victoria, Melbourne 1985


Selected general reference books and exhibition catalogues (listed alphabetically) Australian and New Zealand pottery, National Gallery of Victoria, Melbourne 1963 Australian ceramics, exhibition catalogue, Australian Gallery Directors’ Conference, Sydney 1974 Australian crafts: a survey of recent work, Crafts Board of the Australia Council in association with the Crafts Council of Australia, Sydney 1978 Australian pottery: 1900 to 1950, Shepparton Arts Centre, Victoria 1978 Bottrell, Fay (ed), The artist craftsman in Australia, Jack Pollard Pty Ltd, Sydney 1972 Broinowski, Alison, ‘Travellers’, in The yellow lady: Australian impressions of Asia, OUP, Melbourne 1992 Brown: 1970s ceramics from the Shepparton Art Gallery collection, Shepparton Art Gallery 1991 A catalogue of Australian ceramics, Castlemaine Art Gallery and Historical Museum, Victoria 1991 Caputo, Raffaele & Geoff Burton (eds), Third take: Australian film-makers talk, Allen and Unwin, Sydney 2002 Cochrane, Grace, The crafts movement in Australia: a history, New South Wales University Press, Sydney 1992 A collector’s guide to modern Australian ceramics, Craftsman House, Sydney 1988 Contemporary Australian ceramics, Crafts Board Australia Council, Sydney 1982 Emmett, Peter, 20 x 20 crafts in society 1970–1990, Visual Arts/Crafts Board, Australian Council and the NSW Ministry for the Arts 1988 Ford, Geoff, Encyclopedia of Australian potter’s marks, 2nd ed, Salt Glaze Press, Wodonga 2002 Four arts in Australia, Art Advisory Board & Department of External Affairs, Commonwealth of Australia, Melbourne 1962 Gray, Anne (ed), Australian Art in the National Gallery of Australia, National Gallery of Australia, Canberra 2002 Hammond, Victoria, ‘Introduction’ in Hammond, Victoria (ed), Australian ceramics, Shepparton Art Gallery 1978 Hampshire, Carole, Artists observed: Blue Mountains, artists close up, University of New South Wales Press, Sydney 2007 Herd, Dulcie, The first ten years, The Victorian Ceramics Group, Melbourne 1980 Hood, Kenneth, Pottery, Longmans, Melbourne 1961 Hood, Kenneth & Wanda Garnsey, Australian pottery, Macmillan, South Melbourne 1972 Hood, Kenneth, Contemporary Australian ceramics, Crafts Board, Australia Council, Sydney 1982 Ioannou, Norris, Masters of their craft: tradition and innovation in the Australian contemporary decorative arts, Craftsman House, Sydney 1997 Klepac, Lou (ed), Reserve Bank of Australia collection, Reserve Bank of Australia/Beagle Press, Sydney 1992 Littlemore, Alison, Nine artist potters, Jack Pollard Pty Ltd, North Sydney 1973 McCulloch, Alan & Susan McCulloch (eds), Encyclopedia of Australian art, Allen & Unwin, Sydney 1994 McCulloch, Alan, Susan McCulloch & Emily McCulloch (eds), The new McCulloch’s encyclopedia of Australian art, Miegunyah Press, Carlton 2006 Mansfield, Janet (ed), Potters in Australia: a directory of potters in Australia, their biographies, signatures or marks and photographs of recent works, Pottery in Australia for the Potters’ Society of Australia, Sydney 1977 Mansfield, Janet (ed), The potter’s art: an Australian collection, Cassell Australia, North Ryde 1981 Mansfield, Janet, A collector’s guide to modern Australian ceramics, Craftsman House, Sydney 1988 Mansfield, Janet, Contemporary ceramic art in Australia and New Zealand, Craftsman House, Sydney 1995 Meaney, Neville, Towards a new vision: Australia and Japan across time, University of NSW Press, Sydney 2007 Minogue Coll & Robert Sanderson, Wood-fired ceramics and contemporary practices, A & C Black, London 2000 Mountains and tablelands: Peter Rushforth, Colin Levy, Graham Lupp, Bathurst Regional Gallery 1988 Pascoe, Joseph (ed), Delinquent Angel: Australian historical, Aboriginal and contemporary ceramics, Museo Internationale delle Ceramiche, Florence 1995 Recent ceramics: an exhibition from Australia, Crafts Board, Australia Council, Sydney 1980 Thompson, Patricia, Twelve Australian craftsmen, Angus & Robertson, Sydney 1973


Selected newspapers and journals (chronologically listed) [Paul Haefliger], ‘Pottery by Peter Rushforth’, Sydney Morning Herald, 24 Mar 1952, p 2 ‘Four years’ work on pottery’, Daily Telegraph, [Oct 1955] ‘Pioneer art of potter’, Daily Telegraph, [Oct 1955] James Gleeson, ‘Potter’s display shows vitality’, The Sun, [Oct 1955] ‘He won’t go native’, Australian women’s weekly, Sydney, 2 Nov 1955, p 36 Gertrude Langer, ‘Appeal in pottery exhibits’, Courier Mail, Dec 1955 James Cook, ‘Again pottery invades the Macquarie Galleries’, Daily Telegraph, 9 Oct 1957 [Paul Haefliger], ‘Harmony of form in exhibition’ Sydney Morning Herald, 9 Oct 1957 ‘Pleasing lines in pottery display’, Daily Mirror 10 Oct 1957, p 3 James Gleeson, ‘Appeal in new art show’, The Sun, [Oct 1957] ‘Paintings, pottery on display’, Sydney Morning Herald, 4 Dec 1957 James Gleeson, ‘Superb pottery’, Sun, 14 Dec 1960 ‘Rushforth’s potteries outstanding’, Sydney Morning Herald, 15 Dec 1960 ‘Pottery exhibition’, Sydney Morning Herald, 4 June 1961 ‘He keeps ‘em turning the wheels’, Northern News, 5 July 1961 ‘Peter Rushforth’, Pottery in Australia, vol 1 no 1, May 1962 ‘A trip to Japan’, Sydney Morning Herald, 8 Nov 1962, p 11 Kenneth Hood, ‘Pottery in Australia’, Hemisphere, vol 7 no 6, June 1963, pp 2–8 Daniel Thomas, ‘The week in art: Pottery – it’s come to life in Sydney’, Sunday Telegraph, 24 Nov 1963, p 91 Wanda Garnsey, ‘Pottery in Australia’, Quarterly, Art Gallery of New South Wales, July 1964, pp 198–204 ‘Potters’ exhibition at Dominion Galleries’, Sydney Morning Herald, 28 Oct 1964, p 18 ‘Mr Peter Rushforth and …’, The Sun-Herald, 31 Oct 1965 John Henshaw, ‘Fantasy mixed with function’, The Australian, 20 July 1968, p 10 Barry Pearce, ‘15 Australian potters: an exhibition for the 1968 Festival in the Art Gallery of South Australia’, Pottery in Australia, vol 7 no 1, Autumn 1968, p 13 ‘Arts sound, potter says’, Manly Daily, 23 Oct 1969, p 7 Janet Mansfield, ‘The Potters’ Society of Australia first four potters – Rushforth, McMeekin, Douglas, Englund’, Pottery in Australia, vol 10 no 2, Spring 1969, pp 4–10 Wanda Garnsey, ‘Australian potters’, Hemisphere, vol 14 no 12, Dec 1970, pp 12–18 Janet Mansfield, ‘The Potter’s Society of Australia first four potters: Rushforth, McMeekin, Douglas, Englund’, Pottery in Australia, vol 10 no 2, Spring 1971 Apr Hersey, ‘Peter Rushforth: potter and teacher’, Craft Australia, Summer 1978, pp 14–17 Peter Ward, ‘The pots are singing’, The Australian, 31 May 1978, p 7 ‘Australian craft exhibition to begin an international tour with opening in Honolulu’, The Monthly Forecast, June/July 1978 [np] ‘Ex-students farewell Peter Rushforth’, Pottery in Australia, vol 18 no 1, 1979, pp 6–7 Ted Greenwood, ‘Potter is firing on target’, The Age, 13 Feb 1979, p 2 Gillian Stowell, ‘Potter has work in all major collections’, Newcastle Morning Herald, 14 Mar 1979 Stephen Harrison, ‘Film review: Head, heart and hand’, Pottery in Australia, vol 18 no 2, Oct–Nov 1979, pp 67–68 Alan Warren, ‘A salute to our Oz art educators’, Courier Mail, 10 Dec 1979, p 17 Lorna Grover, ‘Peter Rushforth workshop’, Victorian Ceramic Group Newsletter, no 120, Nov 1980, pp 3–4 Helen Frizell, ‘The Asian interface’, Hemisphere, vol 28 no 2, 1983, pp 108–115 Alan Dwight, ‘The Asian interface: Australian artists and the Far East’, Arts of Asia, Mar–Apr 1984, pp 130–135 Michael Bogle, ’The bowl show: Bowls on the Asian rim’, Craft Australia, no 4, Summer 1984, pp 76–77


Kenneth Hood, ‘Peter Rushforth’, Pottery in Australia, vol 25 no 2, May 1986, pp 14–16 Margaret Legge, ‘Studio ceramics’, Craft Australia yearbook, 1986, pp 2-4 Norris Ioannou, ‘200 years of Australian clay culture’, Pottery in Australia, Bicentennial edition, vol 27 no 2, May 1988, pp 65–80 Arthur McIntyre, ‘The Japanese influence on Australian pottery’, Craft Australia, no 3, 1978, pp 14–17 Jane Heath, ‘A master who turns his craft into an art’, The Australian, 1 Oct 1987, p 11 Ian McKay, ‘Peter Rushforth, the art of the potter’, Pottery in Australia, vol 27 no 1, Feb 1988, p 6 Janet Mansfield, ‘Australian ceramics: an introduction’, Pottery in Australia, Bicentennial edition, vol 27 no 2 May, 1988, pp 4–9 Vanessa Cox, ‘Peter Rushforth’, Craft Australia, no 2, Winter 1988, pp 6–9 Michael Richards, ‘Creation a plea for awareness’, Courier Mail, 11 Apr 1989 Elwyn Lynn, ‘Trim tautness, rotund delight’, The Weekend Australian, Review, 29–30 Sep 1990, p 12 Leonard Smith, ‘Peter Rushforth: a portfolio’, Pottery in Australia, vol 29 no 4, 1990, pp 3–6 Janet Mansfield, ‘The David Jones Art Gallery presents Peter Rushforth’, Ceramics: Art and Perception, no 3, 1991, pp 60–62 ‘Exhibition by artist-potter a rare treat’, The Newcastle Herald, 21 May 1991 Rebecca Lancashire, ‘Search for beauty began in Changi’, The Age, 29 Oct 1991, p 14 Julian Leatherdale, ‘Peter’s pots’, Oz Arts Magazine, Issue 6, 1993, pp 34–39 Kate de Brito, ‘Arts honour for 10 star achievers’, Daily Telegraph, 29 Oct 1993, p 13 ‘Residents honoured by Australia Council’, The Blue Mountains Gazette, 3 Nov 1993, p 3 Jenny Zimmer, ‘East meets West ceramics – no feet of clay’, The Age, Arts and Entertainment Section, 28 Mar 1994, p 18 ‘World famous potter revisits’, The Bellinger Courier-Sun, 8 Feb 1995, p 6 Martin Beaver, ‘Civilian passions: the collection of Ken Lawrence and Don Evans’, Ceramics: Art and Perception, no 26, 1996, pp 68–70 Peter Wilson, ‘Peter Rushforth: a workshop’, Pottery in Australia, vol 36 no 1, Autumn 1997, pp 26–27 ‘Peter Rushforth: celebrating 50 years as a potter’, Pottery in Australia, vol 36 no 2, Winter 1997, p 79 Rainer Richter [Roswitha Wulff, trans.], ‘Australian ceramics at the Schloss Pillnitz, Dresden’, Ceramics: Art and Perception, no 37, 1999, pp 80–82 ‘Peter’s wheel of fortune’, North Shore Times, 14 Apr 1999 Alison Bellamy, ‘Review: Exhibition of stoneware and porcelain’, Newsletter, Ceramic Study Group Inc, Feb 2001, p 3 Karen Weiss, ‘Two friends: Shiga/Rushforth exhibition 2000’, Pottery in Australia, vol 40 no 1, Mar 2001, pp 8–11 Bruce James, ‘The art of teaching’, Sydney Morning Herald, Spectrum, 28 Apr 2001, p 12 Karen Weiss, ‘Opening night ‘Cover story: celebrating 40 years of Pottery’ in Australia’, Journal of Australian Ceramics, vol 41 no 1, Mar 2002, pp 3–5 Robert Bell, ‘A dialogue with Japan: Australian ceramics in the collection of the National Gallery of Australia, Art of Asia, vol 33 no 6, Nov–Dec 2003, pp 47–53 Penny Webb, ‘Ceramics of fire and ice’, The Age, 10 Feb 2004, p 9 Elizabeth Fortescue, ‘Collection of the young at art’, Daily Telegraph, 26 Nov 2004, p 65 Owen Rye, ‘Australian woodfire: a survey – curatorial essay’, Ceramics: Art & Perception, no 59, 2005, pp 33–40 Penny Webb, ‘Shiga Shigeo’, The Sunday Age, 21 Oct 21 2007, p 32 Priscilla Lane, ‘Peter Rushforth donation: visit to Blackheath’, Claylink: Newsletter of Ceramics Victoria, no 316, Mar–Apr 2008, p18 ‘Peter in line for national portrait prize honour’, Blue Mountains Gazette, 12 Mar 2008, p 7 Robert Bevan, ‘Earthly delights: simple materials blend aesthetics and environment’, Financial Review: Luxury Magazine, August 2008, pp 22–26 Zsuzsi Soboslay, ‘Art of the people’, Canberra Times, 16 June 2009, p 8 ‘Film sheds light on Blackheath potter’, Blue Mountains Gazette, 1 Sep 2010, p 61


Jan Howlin, ‘The whole man: the life and work of Peter Rushforth’, Journal of Australian ceramics, vol 51 no 1, Aug 2011, pp 30–40 Natalie Wilson, ‘Peter Rushforth’, Craft Arts International, no 88, 2013, pp 66–71

Interviews (chronologically alphabetically) Hazel de Berg, Interview recorded with Peter Rushforth, 9 May 1963, National Library of Australia, Canberra, ORAL TRC 1/5 Ken Henderson, Interview with Peter Rushforth, potter. National Library of Australia, Canberra, TRC 2016, 18 June 1986 Martin Thomas, Interview with Peter Rushforth, 2005. National Library of Australia, Canberra, TRC 5656, 260 min Jan Howlin, Peter Rushforth: an interview with Jan Howlin, web, 14:27 min, Australian Ceramics Association, August 2011, retrieved from http://vimeo.com/38707188

Radio, films and web (chronologically listed) Heart, head and hand: Peter Rushforth, potter, video cassette, 25 min, directed by Peter Weir, produced by the Crafts Council of Australia, Sydney, 1979 Mornings with Margaret Throsby, ‘Morning interview: Peter Rushforth’, segment, 60 min, ABC Classic FM, broadcast 9 Sep 1996 The diversity of Australian ceramics, video cassette / DVD, 100 min, directed by John Takehara, Mesa Production, Boise Idaho, 1997 State of the art: Peter Rushforth and Shiga Shigeo, web, 5:47 min, Creative Cowboy Films, 2008, retrieved from http://www.creativecowboyfilms.com/art-culture/state-of-the-art-peter-rushforth-and-shiga-shigeo/ Playing with clay: the life and art of Peter Rushforth, DVD, directed by Christina Wilcox, 2011

Peter Rushforth’s potter’s mark


WORKS PETER RUSHFORTH


Mountain landscape 1988 stoneware, Jun glazes and wax resist decoration 51cm height; 22cm diameter Victor Mace Collection


Vase 2009 stoneware, feldspathic nd ash glazes, crackle effect 25.2 cm height; 16.5 cm diameter Private collection, Sydney Vase 2013 stoneware, fly ash, fire box effects 30 cm height; 19 cm diameter Peter Rushforth Collection


Bottle 1978 stoneware 35 cm height; 17 cm diameter Collection: Manly Art Gallery Purchased by Art Gallery Committee Small blossom jar 1980s stoneware, tenmoku and Jun glazes 20 cm height; 13.5 cm diameter Col Levy and Maureen Williams Collection


CLOCKWISE: Vase c2007 stoneware, fly ash, fire box effects 19.5 cm height; 16.7 cm diameter Private collection Sperical vase c1987 stoneware, tenmoku and Jun glazes, wax resist decoration 27cm height; 25.5cm diameter Roswitha Wulff Collection Large blossom jar 1980s stoneware, tenmoku and iron glaze 26.5 cm height; 26 cm diameter Barry Blight Collection Jar 1980s stoneware, temoku Jun glaze 27 cm height, 25 cm diameter Collection: KenDon Museum of Australian Studio Ceramics


Blossom jar c2005 stoneware, Kuan crackle glaze 15.5 cm height; 10 cm diameter Buckle Collection


Blossom jar 1991 stoneware, tenmoku and Jun glazes, wax resist decoration 29 cm height; 23 cm diameter Collection: Manly Art Gallery Purchased by MAGAM Society 1991


Vase c2005 stoneware, Anagama kiln, fire box effects, heavy ash deposits 23.1 cm height; 18 cm diameter Peter Rushforth Collection


ABOUT JUN GLAZE

“ I like its opalescence, and blue is a mysterious colour; it is peace-

ful, and tranquil too. I like the vibrant way it contrasts with the red glazes. The variables in wood-firing can produce many nuances of colour. It also evokes a feeling of the landscape, particularly my own environment up here – the mountains, the mists and snow; but at the same time I don't want to go beyond what comes out of the materials and processes by superimposing a decoration that isn't relevant. It must be integrated, and come out of the materials and processes themselves.

Peter Rushforth to Grace Cochrane, 1996

Bowl 1990s stoneware, tenmoku & Jun glazes, wax resist decoration 10.5 cm height; 25 cm diameter Lance Blundell & Julie Sim Collection


left: Vase c1973 stoneware, salt glaze, paddled decoration 27 cm height; 12 cm diameter John Dermer Collection right: Tall blossom jar 1970-75 stoneware, ash glaze Lance Blundell & Julie Sim collection


Blossom jar c2005 stoneware, Jun and copper red glazes over tenmoku, wax resist decoration 27 cm height; 26 cm diameter Tony Schlosser Collection


CHECKLIST PETER RUSHFORTH


CHECKLIST Vase c1955 stoneware, feldspathic and ash glaze 33.2 cm height; 15 cm diameter Margaret Tuckson Collection

Jug early 1960s stoneware, salt glaze with ash effects 26.3 cm height; 17 cm diameter Buckle Collection

Jar 1960 stoneware, oatmeal glaze, iron brushwork 19 cm height; 8.5 cm diameter Collection: Art Gallery of NSW Purchased 1960 C3.1960

Blossom jar c1968–69 stoneware, tenmoku and Jun glazes, copper red flashes, wax resist decoration 24 cm height; 14.5 cm diameter Sylvia Longfoot Collection

Casserole with cover 1960 stoneware, feldspathic iron glaze 15.5 cm height; 17.5 cm diameter Collection: Art Gallery of New South Wales Purchased 1960 C2.1960

Jar c1969 stoneware, iron feldspathic glaze, clear glaze 24cm height; 20 x 16.5cm diameter Collection: KenDon Museum of Australian Studio Ceramics PR–025

Ceramic jug with green glazed stopper early 1960s unglazed stoneware with glazed celedon interior lip and stopper 23cm height; 13.2cm diameter Collection: Art Gallery of NSW Gift of Enid Hawkins in accordance with the wishes of her mother the late Margel Hinder 1996 403.1996

Vase c1964 stoneware, tenmoku glaze 28 cm height; 16 cm diameter Lent by the Powerhouse Museum, Sydney Purchased 1964 A5279

Bowl early 1960s stoneware, tenmoku glaze with iron brushwork decoration 9.3 cm height; 15.4 cm diameter Free Collection

Bowl 1968 stoneware, ash glaze 12.4 cm height; 35 cm diameter courtesy Ceramics Study Group


Blossom jar c1965–70 stoneware, tenmoku and Jun glazes 36.5cm height; 13.5cm diameter Free Collection

Lidded container c1970 stoneware, iron and feldspathic glazes 19.8 cm height; 24.2 cm diameter John Dermer Collection

Blossom jar 1970 stoneware, ash glaze 21 cm height; 17 cm diameter John Dermer Collection

Large lidded stoneware pot c1970 stoneware, oatmeal glaze 25cm height; 30cm diameter Collection: Bathurst Regional Art Gallery Purchased 2010 2010_017 B

Jug 1970 stoneware, ash glaze 21 cm height; 15 cm diameter John Dermer Collection

Lidded container c1970 stoneware, Breccia rock glaze 11 cm height; 18 cm diameter Collection: KenDon Museum of Australian Studio Ceramics PR–032

Blossom jar c1970 stoneware, feldspathic and iron glazes 32.3 cm height; 17 cm diameter Free Collection

Asymmetrical jar c1970–72 stoneware, limestone glaze with iron decoration 20 cm height; 17.5 cm diameter Margaret Tuckson Collection

Bottle c1970 stoneware 25cm height; 18.6cm diameter Collection: National Gallery of Victoria Presented through the NGV Foundation from the Bequest of Kenneth Hood, Founder Benefactor, 2003 NGV2003.593

Blossom jar 1972 stoneware, limestone and tenmoku glazes 37.5cm height; 25.8cm diameter Collection: Art Gallery of NSW Gift of Enid Hawkins in accordance with the wishes of her mother the late Margel Hinder 1996 404.1996


Jar 1972 stoneware, ash glaze 24cm height; 28cm diameter Collection:National Gallery of Australia Transferred from the Commonwealth Art Advisory Board Lending Collection 2000 00.110

Bowl 1970–75 stoneware, iron brushwork decoration 23.7cm height; 33.5cm diameter Collection: National Gallery of Victoria Presented through the NGV Foundation from the Bequest of Kenneth Hood, Founder Benefactor, 2003 NGV2003.599

Lidded container c1972 stoneware, pinched form, ash and feldspathic glaze 12.5 cm height; 18 cm diameter Collection: KenDon Museum of Australian Studio Ceramics PR–031

Jar 1970– 75 stoneware 19.3cm height; 18.9cm diameter Collection: National Gallery of Victoria Presented through the NGV Foundation from the Bequest of Kenneth Hood, Founder Benefactor, 2003 NGV2003.598

Bowl c1972 stoneware, oatmeal glaze with iron brushwork decoration 7 cm height; 40.2 cm diameter Collection: National Gallery of Australia Purchased 1972 72.453

Jar 1970–75 stoneware 28.7 cm height; 28.3 cm diameter Collection: National Gallery of Victoria Presented through the NGV Foundation from the Bequest of Kenneth Hood, Founder Benefactor, 2003 NGV2003.597

Vase c1973 stoneware, salt glaze, paddled decoration 27 cm height; 12 cm diameter John Dermer Collection

Plate c1970-75 stoneware, iron-red and dolomite glaze with tenmoku splash 7.2 cm height; 30 cm diameter Collection: Manly Art Gallery Gift of John and Jean Garland through the Australian Government’s Cultural Gifts Program 2010 C0171

Bottle 1970–75 stoneware, ash glaze 18.5 cm height; 18.6 cm diameter Collection: National Gallery of Victoria Presented through the NGV Foundation from the Bequest of Kenneth Hood, Founder Benefactor, 2003 NGV2003.601

Tall blossom jar c1970–75 stoneware, ash glaze, incised decoration 34.5 cm height; 14.5 cm diameter Lance Blundell and Julie Sim Collection


Blossom jar c1975 stoneware, iron-red and dolomite glaze 28 cm height; 22.2 cm diameter Collection: National Gallery of Victoria Presented through the NGV Foundation from the Bequest of Kenneth Hood, Founder Benefactor, 2003 NGV2003.603

Platter c1975 stoneware, iron glaze 5 cm height; 42 cm diameter Collection: KenDon Museum of Australian Studio Ceramics PR–041

Vase c1975 stoneware, ash glaze, paddled decoration 31.7 cm height; 12.4 cm diameter Free Collection

Bottle c1975 stoneware 51.6 x 17.6 cm diameter Collection: National Gallery of Victoria Presented through the NGV Foundation from the Bequest of Kenneth Hood, Founder Benefactor, 2003 NGV2003.604

Plate 1975 stoneware, iron-red brushwork 8.2 cm height; 29.7 cm diameter Collection: National Gallery of Australia Purchased 1984 84.1419

Winter pot c1975 stoneware, pale Jun glaze Collection: KenDon Museum of Australian Studio Ceramics PR–004

Bowl c1975 stoneware, iron glaze 16.5 cm height; 21 cm diameter Collection: KenDon Museum of Australian Studio Ceramics PR–018

Jar 1976 stoneware, ash glaze with paddled decoration 23.5cm height; 27.9cm diameter Collection: National Gallery of Australia Purchased 1976 76.1313

Jar c1975 stoneware, iron glaze 26.5 cm height; 25 cm diameter Collection: KenDon Museum of Australian Studio Ceramics PR–035

Jar c1976 stoneware, ash glaze 34.2cm height; 25.5cm diameter Collection: National Gallery of Australia Crafts Board of the Australia Council Collection 1980 82.1618


Jar c1976 stoneware, ash glaze 52.3 cm height; 24.4 cm diameter Collection: National Gallery of Australia Crafts Board of the Australia Council Collection 1980 82.1617

Blossom jar 1977 stoneware, ash glaze 30.1 cm height; 27.4 cm diameter Collection: National Gallery of Australia Crafts Board of the Australia Council Collection 1980 82.518

Vase c1976 stoneware, ash glaze 36.8 cm height; 13.9 cm diameter Collection: National Gallery of Australia Crafts Board of the Australia Council Collection 1980 82.1431

Tea bowl c1977 stoneware, ash glaze 11.7 cm height; 9.6 cm diameter Collection: Newcastle Art Gallery Purchased 1977 1977_020

Bowl c1976 stoneware, tenmoku glaze 16.3 cm height; 35.6 cm diameter Barry Blight Collection

Bottle 1978 stoneware 35 cm height; 17 cm diameter Collection: Manly Art Gallery Purchased by Art Gallery Committee from Ceramics Exhibition 1978 C0039

Tea bowl c1976 stoneware, iron glaze exterior, limestone glaze interior 8.3 cm height; 13.5 cm diameter Lance Blundell and Julie Sim Collection

Jar c1978 stoneware, ash glaze 42.5 cm height; 13.2 cm diameter Collection: National Gallery of Australia Crafts Board of the Australia Council Collection 1980 82.1620

Tea bowl c1976 stoneware, feldspathic glaze with iron brushwork decoration 9.5 cm height; 16 cm diameter Lance Blundell and Julie Sim Collection

Tall jar c1979 stoneware with wood ash glaze, fired upside down 33 cm height; 29 cm diameter Collection: Newcastle Art Gallery Purchased 1979 1979_012


Bowl with lid c1979 stoneware, glazed 11 cm height; 13.9 cm diameter Collection: National Gallery of Australia Crafts Board Collection donated by the Australia Council 1982 83.3271.A-B

Tall vase early 1970s stoneware, ash glaze with iron brushwork decoration 59 cm height; 16 cm diameter Buckle Collection

Blossom jar c1979 stoneware, glaze, iron brushwork 27 cm height; 23 cm diameter Collection: KenDon Museum of Australian Studio Ceramics PR–009

Blossom jar 1970s stoneware, Shino and ash glazes 18 cm height; 12.4 cm diameter Robert Davies Collection

Blossom jar c1979 stoneware, satin Jun glaze, faceted body 25 cm height; 13.5 cm diameter Collection: KenDon Museum of Australian Studio Ceramics PR–014

Blossom jar 1970s stoneware, ash glaze, paddled and incised decoration 29 cm height; 21.6 cm diameter Lance Blundell and Julie Sim Collection

Blossom jar c1979 stoneware, Shino glaze 27 cm height; 20 cm diameter Collection: KenDon Museum of Australian Studio Ceramics PR–036

Platter c1970-75 stoneware, yellow glaze with iron splash 4.5 cm height; 42 cm diameter Collection: KenDon Museum of Australian Studio Ceramics

Blossom jar early 1970s stoneware, tenmoku glaze, faceted body 24 cm height; 14 cm diameter Collection: KenDon Museum of Australian Studio Ceramics PR–015

Plate 1980 stoneware, celadon with iron decoration 6.2cm height; 48.9cm diameter Collection: National Gallery of Australia Purchased 1984 84.1421


Bowl c1980 stoneware, celadon with iron decoration 6 cm height; 21 cm diameter Col Levy and Maureen Williams Collection

Vase 1983 stoneware, Bizen style wood fired, natural ash deposits 21.5 cm height; 13 cm diameter Collection: KenDon Museum of Australian Studio Ceramics PR–020

Plate 1981 stoneware, celadon with iron decoration 6 cm height; 42 cm diameter Lent by the Powerhouse Museum, Sydney Purchased 1981 A7871

Platter 1984 stoneware, Jun glaze 6.5 cm height; 45 cm diameter Collection: Bathurst Regional Art Gallery Purchased 2000 2000_045

Shipley winter trees 1981 stoneware, tenmoku and Jun glazes, wax resist decoration 29.3 cm height; 28.5 cm diameter Collection: Bathurst Regional Art Gallery Purchased 1981 1981_014

Blossom jar 1984 stoneware, Jun glaze 28.6 cm height; 24.1 cm diameter Collection: National Gallery of Australia Purchased 1984 84.1423

Tea bowl c1981 stoneware, feldspathic and tenmoku glazes 13 cm height; 18 cm diameter Marian Howell Collection

Blossom jar c1984 stoneware, Jun glaze 26 cm height; 27.6 cm diameter Collection: National Gallery of Australia Purchased from Gallery admission charges 1984 84.1424

Bottle 1983 stoneware, ash deposits 19.8 cm height; 15.5 cm diameter courtesy Ceramics Study Group

Tea bowl c1984 stoneware, tenmoku glaze, oil spot effect 7.9 cm height; 14 cm diameter David Middlebrook Collection


Blossom jar c1980–85 stoneware, ash glaze 35 cm height; 23.5 cm diameter Buckle Collection

Cold mountain 1987 stoneware, Jun glaze 32.1 cm height; 26.4cm diameter Collection: Newcastle Art Gallery Gift of the Newcastle Gallery Society 1988 1988.059

Blossom jar c1980–85 stoneware, Anagama kiln, heavy ash deposits 19 cm height; 11.5 cm diameter Buckle Collection

Jar 1987 stoneware, feldspathic glaze 14.5 cm height; 20 cm diameter Collection: Bathurst Regional Art Gallery Purchased 1988 1988_018

Blossom jar c1980–85 stoneware, fire box effects 23 cm height; 14 cm diameter Buckle Collection

Spherical vase c1987 stoneware, tenmoku and Jun glazes, wax resist decoration 27 cm height; 25.5 cm diameter Roswitha Wulff Collection

Blossom jar c1980–85 stoneware, fire box effects 22 cm height; 19 cm diameter Buckle Collection

Jar c1988 stoneware, tenmoku and Jun glazes 28.5 cm height; 24 cm diameter Collection: KenDon Museum of Australian Studio Ceramics PR–005

Platter 1987 stoneware, copper glaze 5 cm height; 28 cm diameter Collection: Bathurst Regional Art Gallery 1987_019A

Mountain landscape 1988 stoneware, Jun glaze, wax resist decoration 51 cm height; 22 cm diameter Victor Mace Collection


Blossom jar 1988 stoneware, tenmoku glaze 27 cm height; 24 cm diameter Collection: Bathurst Regional Art Gallery Purchased 1988

Small blossom jar 1980s stoneware, tenmoku and Jun glazes 20 cm height; 13.5 cm diameter Col Levy and Maureen Williams Collection

Blossom jar c1989 stoneware, tenmoku and Jun glazes 25cm height; 19 cm diameter Collection: KenDon Museum of Australian Studio Ceramics PR–024

Platter 1980s stoneware, tenmoku and Jun glazes, pinched decoration along rim 11.5cm height; 34.5cm diameter David Middlebrook Collection

Small blossom jar early 1980s stoneware, tenmoku and Jun glazes 18 cm height; 13.5 cm diameter Robert Davies Collection

Bowl 1980s stoneware, natural ash deposits 8.5 cm height; 15.5 cm diameter Lance Blundell and Julie Sim Collection

Blossom jar early 1980s stoneware, ash and feldspathic glazes 40 cm height; 25.5 cm diameter David Exton Collection

Bowl 1980s stoneware, ash glaze 9 cm height; 17 cm diameter Lance Blundell and Julie Sim Collection

Tall blossom jar 1970-75 stoneware, ash glaze 45.5 cm height; 18.2 cm diameter Lance Blundell and Julie Sim Collection

Spherical vase 1980s stoneware, ash glaze, ash deposits 25 cm height; 26.5 cm diameter Buckle Collection


Lidded pot 1980s stoneware, Shino and ash glaze with iron glaze brushwork 15.5 cm height; 15.2 cm diameter Robert Davies Collection

Blossom jar 1980s stoneware, feldspathic glaze, crackle effect 16.8 cm height; 21.8 cm diameter Peter Rushforth Collection

Jar 1980s stoneware, tenmoku and Jun glazes 27 cm height; 25 cm diameter Collection: KenDon Museum of Australian Studio Ceramics PR–022

Blossom jar 1980s stoneware, feldspathic glaze, crackle effect 22.7 cm height; 23 cm diameter Peter Rushforth Collection

Large bowl 1980s stoneware, Jun glaze 20 cm height; 38 cm diameter Collection: KenDon Museum of Australian Studio Ceramics

Bowl 1980s stoneware, feldspathic and ash glazes 9 cm height; 17 cm diameter Lance Blundell and Julie Sim Collection

Large blossom jar 1980s stoneware, tenmoku and iron glaze 26.5 cm height; 26 cm diameter Barry Blight Collection

Tea bowl 1980s stoneware, celadon glaze with iron brushwork decoration 10.8 cm height; 14.5 cm diameter Lance Blundell and Julie Sim Collection

Blossom jar 1980s stoneware, celadon glaze 22 cm height; 15.5 cm diameter Collection: KenDon Museum of Australian Studio Ceramics PR–013

Tea bowl 1980s stoneware, Shino glaze 7.8 cm height; 14.3 cm diameter Lance Blundell and Julie Sim Collection


Tea bowl 1980s stoneware, Shino glaze 9 cm height; 10.7 cm diameter Lance Blundell and Julie Sim Collection

White cloud 1990 stoneware, iron glaze, white overglaze 26 cm height; 24 cm diameter Collection: Newcastle Art Gallery Purchased 1991 1991.023

Tea bowl 1980s stoneware, tenmoku glaze with oil spot effect 7.5 cm height; 13.5 cm diameter Lance Blundell and Julie Sim Collection

Jar (also known as Fire and spirit) 1990 stoneware, tenmoku and iron glazes 39 cm height; 21 cm diameter Lent by the Powerhouse Museum, Sydney Purchased 1990 90/1038

Spherical vase mid 1980s stoneware, ash glaze 25.5 cm height; 30 cm diameter Lance Blundell and Julie Sim Collection

Covered jar c1990 stoneware, iron brushwork 22.6 cm height; 24.4 cm diameter Collection: National Gallery of Victoria Presented through the NGV Foundation from the Bequest of Kenneth Hood, Founder Benefactor, 2003 NGV2003.606.a-b

Jar late 1980s stoneware, tenmoku and Jun glazes 32 cm height; 29 cm diameter Collection: KenDon Museum of Australian Studio Ceramics PR–002

Blossom jar c1990 stoneware, tenmoku and Jun glazes 37 cm height; 22 cm diameter Col Levy and Maureen Williams Collection

Teapot late 1980s stoneware, tenmoku and Jun glazes, cane handle 20 cm height; 19.5 x 15 cm Collection: KenDon Museum of Australian Studio Ceramics PR–028

Blossom jar 1991 stoneware, tenmoku and Jun glazes, wax resist decoration 29 cm height; 23 cm diameter Collection: Manly Art Gallery Purchased by MAGAM Society 1991


Vase c1991 stoneware, tenmoku and Jun glazes, wax resist decoration 28 cm height; 26 cm diameter Marian Howell Collection

Blossom jar 1999 stoneware, Jun glaze 32.2 cm height; 23 cm diameter Susan Rushforth Collection

Lidded container c1994 stoneware, facetted, natural ash glaze and deposits 13.5 cm height; 16 cm diameter Collection: KenDon Museum of Australian Studio Ceramics PR–033

Vase c1999 stoneware, thick Shino glaze 21.8 cm height; 14.5 cm diameter David Middlebrook Collection

Jar 1996 stoneware, Jun glaze over dolerite iron glaze Lent by the Powerhouse Museum, Sydney Purchased with funds donated by Museum staff in memory of their colleague Bill Roberts, 1997 97/7/1

Round blossom jar 1990s stoneware, tenmoku and Jun glazes 19.5 cm height; 20 cm diameter Private collection, NSW

Bowl c1998 stoneware, Shino and ash glazes 8 cm height; 16.5 cm diameter Private Collection

Small blossom jar 1990s stoneware, oil spot glaze 13.5 cm height; 10.2 cm diameter Peter Rushforth Collection

Tea bowl c1998 stoneware, Shino and ash glazes 7.5 cm height; 12.5 cm diameter Buckle Collection

Blossom jar 1990s stoneware, feldspathic and limestone glazes, crackle effect 24.5 cm height; 14 cm diameter Peter Rushforth Collection


Vase 1990s stoneware, Shino glaze with iron brushwork 22 cm height; 11 cm diameter Private collection, Sydney

Vase 1990s stoneware, tenmoku and Jun glazes 29.5 cm height; 20.6 cm diameter Peter Rushforth Collection

Blossom jar 1990s stoneware, Shino and ash glaze, beaten decoration 28.5 cm height; 11.5 cm diameter Lance Blundell and Julie Sim Collection

Bowl 1990s stoneware, tenmoku and Jun glazes, wax resist decoration 10.5 cm height; 25 cm diameter Lance Blundell and Julie Sim Collection

Large vase 1990s stoneware, tenmoku and Jun glazes 37 cm height; 30.8 cm diameter Lance Blundell and Julie Sim Collection

Blossom jar 1990s stoneware, ash glaze 32 cm height; 23 cm diameter Ian and Anne Smith Collection

Small blossom jar 1990s stoneware, Jun glaze, wax resist decoration 16 cm height; 13.6 cm diameter Lance Blundell and Julie Sim Collection

Blossom jar 1990s stoneware, fly ash deposits, fire box effects 19.7 cm height; 11.5 cm diameter Lance Blundell and Julie Sim Collection

Small blossom jar 1990s stoneware, tenmoku and Jun glazes 17 cm height; 12.5 cm diameter Col Levy and Maureen Williams Collection

Blossom jar 1990s stoneware, fly ash deposits, fire box effects 18.5 cm height; 13.2 cm diameter Lance Blundell and Julie Sim Collection


Blossom jar 1990s stoneware, ash glaze and deposits 18.6 cm height; 12.6 cm diameter Lance Blundell and Julie Sim Collection

Tea bowl 1990s stoneware, Jun glaze 11 cm height; 16 cm diameter Collection: KenDon Museum of Australian Studio Ceramics

Tea bowl 1990s stoneware, tenmoku and Jun glazes 10.5 cm height; 15 cm diameter Col Levy and Maureen Williams Collection

Tea bowl 1990s stoneware, tenmoku and Jun glazes 9 cm height; 14 cm diameter Col Levy and Maureen Williams Collection

Tea bowl 1990s stoneware, Shino glaze with iron brushwork decoration 6.8 cm height; 11.7 cm diameter Lance Blundell and Julie Sim Collection

Tea bowl 1990s stoneware, Shino glaze with iron brushwork decoration 6.9 cm height; 11 cm diameter Lance Blundell and Julie Sim Collection

Bowl 1990s stoneware, tenmoku and Jun glazes 6 cm height; 15.5 cm diameter David Exton Collection

Tea bowl 1990s stoneware, tenmoku and Jun glazes 8.5 cm height; 12.5 cm diameter Lance Blundell and Julie Sim Collection

Tea bowl 1990s stoneware, feldspathic and ash glazes, copper red flashing 6.5 cm height; 16.3 cm diameter Lance Blundell and Julie Sim Collection

Tea bowl 1990s stoneware, pale Jun and copper red glazes 8.9 cm height; 13.2 cm diameter Lance Blundell and Julie Sim Collection


Tea bowl early 1990s stoneware, Shino glaze with iron brushwork 8.8 cm height; 14.5 cm diameter Lance Blundell and Julie Sim Collection

Blossom jar c2000 stoneware, tenmoku and Jun glazes, copper red flashes 22.6 cm height; 24 cm diameter Janet Rushforth Collection

Tea bowl 1990s stoneware, tenmoku and Jun glazes 11 cm height; 13 cm diameter Lance Blundell and Julie Sim Collection

Bowl c2000 stoneware, tenmoku & Jun glazes 6.5 cm height; 15.5 cm diameter Lance Blundell and Julie Sim Collection

Bowl 1990s stoneware, hakame, iron brushwork 9.5 cm height; 31.2 cm diameter Lance Blundell and Julie Sim Collection

Blossom jar c2000 stoneware, Shino glaze with iron brushwork decoration 26.5 cm height; 25.5 cm diameter Janet Rushforth Collection

Large blossom jar c2000 stoneware, tenmoku and Jun glazes, wax resist brushwork with glaze drips 32 cm height; 30.2 cm diameter Dr and Mrs England Collection

Blossom jar c2000 stoneware, Shino glaze with iron brushwork decoration 29.7 cm height; 15 cm diameter Peter Rushforth Collection

Large blossom jar c2000 stoneware, Jun glaze 32 cm height, 29 cm diameter Thor Beowulf Collection

Tea bowl c2000 stoneware, Shino glaze with iron decoration 8.5 cm height; 11.5 cm diameter Thor Beowulf Collection


Tea bowl c2000 stoneware, tenmoku & Jun glazes, copper red blush 8 cm height; 15 cm diameter Ian and Anne Smith Collection

Blossom jar c2005 stoneware, Jun and copper red glazes over tenmoku, wax resist decoration 27 cm height; 26 cm diameter Tony Schlosser Collection

Blossom jar 2002 stoneware, Shino glaze 17.3 cm height; 17 cm diameter Susan Rushforth Collection

Blossom jar c2005 stoneware, Kuan crackle glaze 15.5 cm height; 10 cm diameter Buckle Collection

Vase c2000–05 stoneware, ash glaze, paddled decoration 23 cm height; 15 cm diameter Peter Rushforth Collection

Blossom jar c2005 stoneware, tenmoku and Jun glazes 33 cm height; 23 cm diameter Peter Rushforth Collection

Blossom jar c2000–05 stoneware, ash glaze, fire box effects 16.3 cm height; 12.8 cm diameter Lance Blundell and Julie Sim Collection

Bowl c2005 stoneware, tenmoku and Jun glazes 8.5 cm height; 12.5 cm diameter Peter Rushforth Collection

Platter c2005 stoneware, Jun glaze 7 cm height; 35.5 cm diameter Private collection, Sydney

Blossom jar c2005 stoneware, ash glaze, incised shell decoration and firebox effects 23.2 cm height; 18.5 cm diameter Peter Rushforth Collection


Vase c2005 stoneware, Anagama kiln, fire box effects, heavy ash deposits 23.1 cm height; 18 cm diameter Peter Rushforth Collection

Vase 2009 stoneware, feldspathic and ash glazes, crackle effect 25.2 cm height; 16.5 cm diameter Private collection, Sydney

Blossom jar c2006 stoneware, Shino glaze 18.6 cm height; 16 cm diameter Private collection, Sydney

Blossom jar 2010 stoneware, tenmoku and Jun glazes 35 cm height; 19.5 cm diameter Sylvia Longfoot Collection

Blossom jar c2007 stoneware, Jun glaze 34.2 cm height; 20 cm diameter Private collection, Sydney

Spherical vase c2010 stoneware, tenmoku and Jun glazes, wax resist decoration 25 cm height; 25.5 cm diameter Private collection, Sydney


Vase c2007 stoneware, fly ash, fire box effects 19.5 cm height; 16.7 cm diameter Private collection

Blossom jar 2012 stoneware, Jun glaze 25 cm height; 25 cm diameter Emeritus Professor Peter and Mrs Jennifer Pinson

Blossom jar 2009 stoneware, Jun glaze 32 cm height; 19 cm diameter Collection: National Gallery of Australia Purchased 2009 2009.593

Vase 2013 stoneware, fly ash, fire box effects 30 cm height; 19 cm diameter Peter Rushforth Collection

Blossom jar 2013 stoneware, ash glaze 27 cm height; 26 cm diameter Peter Rushforth Collection

Vase 2013 stoneware, fly ash, fire box effects 29 cm height; 23 cm diameter Peter Rushforth Collection


ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS The S.H. Ervin Gallery would like to acknowledge the assistance of the following people and organisations in the presentation of the exhibition. Firstly our sincere thanks to Arts NSW for providing much needed project funding in order for the Gallery to present the exhibition. This valuable support has enabled us to loan works from major collections across the nation and bring it to Sydney for the exhibition. We are indebted to the many lenders to the exhibition including Art Gallery of New South Wales, National Gallery of Australia, National Gallery of Victoria, Powerhouse Museum, KenDon Museum of Australian Studio Ceramics, Melbourne, Bathurst Regional Art Gallery, Manly Art Gallery & Museum, Newcastle Art Gallery and to the many private lenders who have generously loaned works for the exhibition. We are grateful for the support of our hotel partner The Langham Hotel and Grays Online for sponsoring wine for the opening evening. Special thanks also to Dr Grace Cochrane, Dr Robert Bell AM, Vicki Grima, Marea Gazzard, Les Blakebrough, Dr Owen Rye, Merran Esson, and the late Janet Mansfield for their support of the exhibition from the outset. Thanks go to Christina Wilcox for allowing us to use her documentary ‘Playing with Clay’ in the exhibition. Sincere thanks to Natalie Wilson, S.H. Ervin Gallery Committee member, for her tireless work co-ordinating the exhibition and writing the catalogue essay - your support and contribution to this project has been vital. Natalie Wilson would like to thank Tom Mellor and Simon Reese, who gave their support and advice from the outset of this project. Finally the enthusiasm and support of the artist, Peter Rushforth and his devoted wife Bobbie have instilled in us all a great admiration for your achievements over the past sixty years. Thank you for your immense contribution to Australian visual culture through making and teaching and for sharing your work and lives with us.

S.H. ERVIN GALLERY Director: Assistant Curator:

Jane Watters Katy Preston

Installation: Photographer: Photographic Assistant: Builder:

Media & Public Programs: Kathryn Beattie Catalogue Designer: Charlotte Holmes à Court Gallery Volunteer: Chantale Dorrington-Smith

Chas Glover, Stephen Ralph, Stuart Watters Felicity Jenkins Tom Mellor Darren McLachlan

This catalogue is copyright. Apart from fair dealing for the purposes of private study, research, criticism or review as permitted under the Copyright Act 1968, no part may be reproduced without prior permission of the publisher. E-Published to accompany the exhibition: All Fire Up: Peter Rushforth, potter S.H. Ervin Gallery 12 July - 25 August 2013. Opened by Her Excellency Professor Marie Bashir AC CVO, Governor of New South Wales on Thursday 11 July. Published by the National Trust of Australia (NSW) 2013 Watson Road, Observatory Hill, The Rocks, Sydney NSW 2000 © National Trust of Australia (NSW) S.H. Ervin Gallery artworks ©Peter Rushforth texts© Natalie Wilson & Peter Rushforth

Watson Road, Observatory Hill, The Rocks, Sydney  9258 0173 www.shervingallery.com.au Parking, Café & Shop Open: Tuesday-Sunday 11am-5pm

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The S.H. Ervin Gallery is supported by the NSW Government through Arts NSW

Peter Rushforth: All Fired Up  

eCatalogue

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