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James Tower Exhibition at Erskine, Hall & Coe

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by Bastion Harrison (subscribe)
Freelance writer and poet from London; if you would like to read my poetry, please check out my book, 'Poems on the Page', available from
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20th Century Ceramic Art
james tower, pottery, erskine hall
'Divided Form' by James Tower, 1982

Erskine Hall & Coe is a gallery that specialises in twentieth century ceramics. They have an extensive stock, showcasing artists such as ncluding works by, Lucie Rie and Hans Coper, Jennifer Lee, Gwyn Hanssen Pigott, Shozo Michikawa, and Sara Flynn.

In a new exhibition that runs throughout February, they are featuring the work of James Tower, who is considered one of the most distinguished ceramicists of that era. According to the historian, Timothy Wilcox, although Tower had a preference for casting pottery out of clay, it was ultimately the endeavour for artistic expression that was more important to him than the material used.

The twenty-five vessels highlighted at the gallery express an interest in nature, through his use of naturalistic patterns and colours. His ceramics almost look like sea life fossils that have been tumbled and polished. My favourite, however, is 'Tree Form', (1965-66). The white earthenware reminds me of fungi sprouting from the ground of a forest.

Tower started his career before the Second World War, but it was not until the 1950s that he had his first exhibition. Tower says that his goal is to achieve 'a sense of completion. A longing for a serene harmonious whole which contains dynamism and vitality, satisfying our intellectual and spiritual needs.' You can see his work for free until the 28th February, where he is featured alongside artists such as Barbara Hepworth and William Scott.
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Why? Fun for art lovers
When: 5th Feb - 28th Feb
Phone: 44 (0) 20 7491 1706
Where: Erskine Hall & Coe
Cost: Free
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