Critique: A set.

Today we set out to critique Jason Lawfer’s Whiskey Cup Set and Cathi Jefferson’s Nine Yunomis posted yesterday. Both sets are displayed on similar crate like shelves. They make a nice spread in the “500 Cups” book. But why display them on shelves?

I have to admit right here and right now that I am a fan of displaying pots on fixtures found around the home or studio, when done well. It is my belief that functional pottery displayed in a setting such as that within our lives ought to be conducive photograph documentation. Here we have a conumdrum. Things are better in isolation. Just look in any gallery or museum or blog or etsy store. Objects when given space focus us our attention on the imidiate object, is not muddled by context. The context imposed upon the item is all cerebral. I have come to realize how presentations with hints of a greater context can be beneficial. There is, however, a fine point where the object is absorbed by it’s surroundings. I feel this phenomenon is displayed in with this page spread. I would argue that Lawfer’s Whiskey Cup Set is about the ensemble and Cathi Jefferson’s Nine Yunomis set is about the cups. Now here is the kicker, I like the photo of the whiskey cups better than that of the Yunomis but feel the Yunomis set is more cohesive. Once again, the photo of the Yunomis set is about the pots (fine intricate motif laiden wares) and the photo of the Whiskey cups (lovely shotties with a variety of sizes and firing surfaces) is about the installation. Potter vs. curator.

If displayed full on in the home and given time I foresee my constant scrupulation of the varied and subtle whiskey cups vs. the prologed bfatuation with the stunning Yunomis. The subtle is often what lasts and works in a modern day home.

Here we have a great example of perhaps bring off topic. If in a crit some mediator could graciously say “that is very well as good Miss Bridget but, what about these throwing lines? What about that foot ring? What about the discrepancy of height and motif with in the set?” I want to talk about shelves. But do you really care about the shelves? Do the makers really care if the best photo from the photoshoot happened to be the one involving the shelves? Is there a statement here? Can we discuss what constitutes “a set”? The question, “What makes something a set?”, has always been hard for me to answer. All sets are made or amalgamated in so many ways for so many reasons.

What makes a set to you?
What do you think of these pots?
What do you think of those shelves!?


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