Wednesday 30 November 2022
Often called ‘the potter’s potter’, Richard Batterham has been held in high esteem by fellow potters and collectors alike, but this is the first monograph on his life and work.
At Bryanston School Batterham was taught by Donald Potter and determined to spend his life in pottery. After two years’ apprenticeship with Bernard Leach he returned to Dorset in 1959 with his new wife Dinah Dunn to establish his own studio in the village of Durweston. Here for over 60 years he produced predominantly stoneware domestic pottery instantly recognisable by form. These forms – although familiar in shape – were continually amended and developed.
Richard Batterham sadly died in September 2021, but the recent exhibition of his work at the V&A was developed with his help and guidance, drawing on his personal archive of pots kept back from sale over the years for some quality he particularly valued. The exhibition and this accompanying book show his pots together in clusters or on their own plinths as sculptural forms with room to breathe.
With essays about Batterham’s work and philosophy and 144 illustrations (including photography by Nigel Wood), this book is a wonderful legacy and fascinating insight into the life of a master potter.
Richard Batterham: Studio Potter
Tanya Harrod & Sarah Griffin (eds), V&A Publishing, 2022, £30 hb
Condensed from a review by Michael Jeffery in DAS Newsletter No. 126