Originally posted by Mrs. Neele:
It was always my intention to write short reviews of some of the books in my personal library. Time restraints have prevented this so far. Instead, I thought it might be interesting to share some favourites in the form of book list with 'thumbnail' descriptions. Some of these are out of print but will be available on eBay or second hand on Abebooks.co.uk
.Subject: Clarice CliffComprehensively Clarice Cliff
It goes without saying this is THE book for Christmas, Easter, Birthdays and anything else requiering a gift, see my review
.Clarice Cliff by Peter Wentworth-Sheilds & Kay Johnson, L'Odeon, London 1976
More than just a book, a collectors item. Two editions were printed, the first edition of 1501 copies are numbered, the second edition has the number missing. The dust jacket shows the design "House and Bridge". You will sometimes see the design "House and Bridge" referred to as "Front Cover" for this reason.The Rich Designs of Clarice Cliff Shapes Book by Terry Darrington & Richard Green, Rich Designs, 2000
Clearly set out drawn outlines of most of the shapes issued by the Wilkinson factory in Clarice Cliff's time. Includes shape numbers and heights. Easy to find your shape, great to carry around in your pocket.The Rich Designs of Clarice Cliff Pocket Book by Richard Green, Rich Designs, 1998
Even smaller pocket book with clear photos of of most of the Clarice Cliff designs. Handy for the new collector who is hoping to spot an unmarked Clarice Cliff or to confirm an item is genuine, or for anyone interested in naming a pattern away from base. The Rich Designs of Clarice Cliff by Richard Green and Des Jones, Rich Designs, 1995
Still a fabulous book to browse and and read, although some information is not particularly correct. Very readable. Massive hard back book. The Bizarre Affair by Leonard Griffin, Louis Meisel and Susan Meisel, Thames and Hudson, 1988
Readable but won't fit in a stocking.Clarice Cliff by Lynn Knight, Bloomsbury Publishing Plc, 2005
A proper review for this newly published book is well overdue by myself, but I must confess to be still reading it. Three quarters of the way through, I have to admit to a difficult journey fraught with pencilled in exclamations in the margins, constant references to check the sources of information and frequently retreiving the book from the garden where I throw it each time the subject changes so abruptly I have to scream. Apart from that there are a few quite brilliant passages where I forget I am even reading. Buy it if you must, but read it when you can concentrate. Subject: Ceramic Design20th Century Ceramic Designers in Britain, Andrew Casey, Antique Collectors' Club, 2001
This is an important publication if your interests extend beyond Clarice Cliff. From Daisy Makeig-Jones of Wedgwood, Susie Cooper, and Eve Midwinter, to Susan Williams-Ellis of Portmerion, each beautifully illustrated chapter is more like a book in itself with highly readable and extensive analysis.British Art Deco Ceramics by Colin Mawston, Shiffer Publishing Ltd, 2000
Published and available in the USA. UK buyers can try the author's web site for copies - www.decodance.com
With an extensive chapter on Clarice Cliff, and useful chapters on Keith Murray and Susie Cooper, the author includes interesting sections on the designs of other factories including Carlton, Shelley and Barker Brothers. A respectable and easy to read book aimed at the newer collector.Art Deco and Modernist Ceramics by Karen McCready, Thames and Hudson, 1995
A world wide fast-track survey of ceramics of the period written in an historical style. Not for the die-hard 'Cliffie' as the extensive A-Z of international designers will give them a well-deserved jolt - the world doesn't begin and end with Clarice Cliff. Miller's Twentieth-Century Ceramics by Paul Atterbury, Ellen Paul Denker and Maureen Batkin, Octopus Publishing Group Ltd, 1999
Great authors. But this has to be for the dealer rather than collector. A page for each pottery, nicely illustrated, it works best for the collector if you come home with something you like and need to find out more about it. Subject: The Historical ViewpointThirties: British art and design before the war, Arts Council of Great Britain, 1980
Highly recommended readable book that deserves a more extensive review. It was produced for an exhibition at The Hayward Gallery. The introduction to the 1930's by A. J. P. Taylor is just the start of a high quality evaluation of the era from studio pottery to rail travel, from book illustration to postage stamp design. A must for your bookshelf but read it first. Black and white illustrations. Art Deco 1910 - 1939, edited by Charlotte Benton, Tim Benton and Ghislaine Wood, V&A Publications, 2003
Fabulous book worthy of coffee table and bedside table as well as for serious study. The deco period is surveyed internationally and if you missed the exhibition get a taste from the Victoria and Albert Museum web site here
.The Encyclopedia of Decorative Styles 1850 - 1935, William Hardy, Steven Adams, Arie Van De Lemme, Qunitet Publishing Limited, 1988
How did design evolve into what we now call the Art Deco period? This book is written by art historians and is highly readable and well illustrated. The three sections - "The Arts & Crafts Movement", "A Guide to Art Nouveau" and "A Guide to Art Deco" - discuss ceramics and also open your eyes to the influences outside of that small area. Don't be put off by the authors being art historians, it is well written and easy to follow. Twentieth-Century Ornament by Jonathan M. Woodham, Rizzoli, NY, 1990
A wider remit than the above book. Very little on ceramics but interesting nevertheless, particularly on the deco and 1960's sections. Well illustrated. Subject: The Female ViewpointPotters and Paintresses: Women Designers in the Pottery Industry 1870 - 1955 by Cheryl Buckley, The Women's Press, 1990
No need to go any further if you want to find out how a woman such as Clarice Cliff may have experienced life and attitudes in her journey to Chetwynd. You can put her life into context using the book as a framework.
Beautifully detailed, intelligently discussed and easy to read, it discusses the parts played by designers such as Millicent Taplin, Star Wedgwood, Charlotte Rhead, Jessie Van Hallen, Freda Beardmore, Susie Cooper and Clarice Cliff in the pottery industry of this country.
Potters and Paintresses also challenges the concept of intrinsic feminine sensibilities and demonstrates how women acted out the roles expected of their gender within the economic and political necessities of the time. There is no need to read it as a feminist tract, however, the history itself is fascinating and unearths more about the general life of Clarice Cliff and her paintresses than other books that attempt to "...draw a vivid portrait of Britain between the wars, and in particular the lives of women."A Woman's Touch: Women in Design from 1860 to the Present Day, Isabelle Anscombe, Elisabeth Sifton Books, 1984
Ms. Anscombe's approach in this book is to demonstrate how the female sensibility came to the forefront in design. Written 6 years before Cheryl Buckley, the newly revived women's movement was still in it's infancy and so understandable.
A Woman's Touch excells in highlighting important women designers in all walks of life and within the context of their political and economic situations. However, there is very little in the way of ceramic design and the author does not have a very high opinion of Clarice Cliff. The accounts of the other important art and design movements taking place outside the UK are very interersting and readable. Probably of interest only to the more specialist reader.Designing Women: Cinema, Art Deco, & The Female Form by Lucy Fischer, Columbia University Press, NY, 2003
If you like black and white movies, Greta Garbo and Demetre Chiparus figures, this is the book for you. This book describes and explains the aesthetic of the deco era. Never mind Clarice Cliff, light me a cigarette daaaaahling.