Saturday, October 10, 2009

Chris White

I recently heard from Chris White, who was a thrower at Poole between 1975 and 1980, and whose distinctive CW monogram can often be found on the hand-thrown Delphis, Aegean, Traditional and other pots of this period. In fact, Chris thinks he must have thrown tens of thousands of pots!

Chris has been living and working in Finland for 30 years as a ceramist, having 10 Finnish Master Championships, 2 Scandinavian Master Championships and exhibitions in Japan, Sweden, Holland, England and France. More recently, he has become a wilderness guide as well! You can read more about his current venture at his website

Chris tells me that he has just got his pottery workshop into working order. In the workshop I was surprised to learn he still has the turning lathe that Jimmy Soper used to turn all the hand-thrown ware in the Craft section at Poole Pottery. This was to give a smooth surface to the pots for the paintresses to work on.

I hadn't realised Jimmy Soper was still working at Poole in the 1970's. He is, of course, best remembered for the banded vases of the late 1930's and early 1950's which echoed the style of Keith Murray at Wedgwood. Chris says "You could say Jimmy was part of the old Poole Pottery, he worshiped the place, and had his hands full teaching us young ones! One day he put 3 or 4 trucks of ware outside to dry (for turning), he didnt noticed that they had frozen, when he bought them in they all started to collapse!`Well I´m Buggered´ was his comment."

Chris bought the lathe from Poole Pottery together with the original blocks used for shapes 15, 31, 84, 93 and 660. Chris promised Jimmy he would take care of the lathe - which he has, as it is still in excellent working order!

This picture is of some of Chris's more recent ceramic work. If any old workmates would like to get in touch Chris would be pleased to hear from you via his website.


Blogger Unknown said...

Just to keep you updated, 10 years since this interview I have now moved to Luleå Sweden. Established Mokk AB with my partner, still throwing and producing ceramics and Jim's turning lathe and blocks are still with me and will have a special place in our new studio 😊

8:29 pm  

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