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'Wedgwood to Wash Basins' program offered at Historic Deerfield

February 20, 2012
DEERFIELD "From Wedgwood to Wash Basins" will be offered at Historic Deerfield on April 11, 18 and 25.
Most people are familiar with the term "Wedgwood." To some it represents an English china company, and to others a fashionable blue and white pottery also known as jasperware. Less well known to modern audiences, though, is the man behind the name, Josiah Wedgwood
In the 18th century he was one of the most influential ceramic manufacturers in the world. His life and legacy will be the focus of a new three-week museum course taught by Amanda E. Lange, Curatorial Department chair and Curator of Historic Interiors. Titled "From Wedgwood to Wash Basins: Exploring 18th-Century English Pottery," the classes will take place on Wednesday evenings April 11, 18 and 25 at Historic Deerfield.
"Whether you are a new collector, student, or even just curious about the fascinating world of 18th-century English earthenwares and stonewares then this course is for you," Lange said. "Each session will feature an illustrated lecture and hands-on access to objects from the Historic Deerfield collection."
Participants will learn how English ceramics were created in the 18th century, and the early types of pottery that preceded Wedgwood's production. They will also trace the rise of the Five English creamware chestnut or orange basket with an elaborate pierced cover and solid press-molded base, which is impressed "WEDGEWOOD/O" on the underside of the base.
The class will explore how Wedgwood revolutionized the ceramic industry, invented new types of earthenwares and stonewares, and created marketing methods that we would find familiar today. The course will conclude with a survey of influences on ceramics in the 18th century from Asian designs to Neoclassical sources.
Lange has curated the ceramics, glass, and metalware collections at Historic Deerfield for the past 17 years.
She is the author of "Delftware at Historic Deerfield" (2001) and "Chinese Export Art at Historic Deerfield" (2005), and is currently at work on a catalogue of the museum's English creamware collection.
"From Wedgwood to Wash Basins: Exploring 18th-century English Pottery" will take place on three consecutive Wednesday evenings in April from 7 to 8:30 p.m. in the Bartels Seminar Room at the Flynt Center of Early New England Life at Historic Deerfield.
The registration fee is $105 per person ($95 for members of Historic Deerfield). Early-bird registrations save $10 if placed by March 21.
For information and registration, visit www.historic-deerfield.org/wedgwood2012 or contact Julie Orvis Marcinkiewicz by phone at 775-7179 or by email at jmarcinkiewicz@historic-deerfield.org .
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