Saturday, February 17, 2007

Visiting the Ephraim Faience Pottery Booth

We made our annual visit to the Ephraim Faience Pottery booth yesterday. This is our favorite contemporary pottery studio. They have about 6 crafts people hand throwing, decorating and glazing all the pottery. It is stylized designs that are made in limited editions. They seem to have put a considerable amount of work into recreating the look of the old glazes and derivatives of old forms by Grueby et al.

In the second picture Kevin Hicks (pottery founder and head potter) is answering questions as people make their purchases. What is great is that a majority of the people at the pottery come to the conference and they have lots of variety to choose from along with some limited edition pieces.

This year Stephanie and I went crazy and each purchased a piece of pottery. Mine is the Star Fern with a great molted green glaze. Stephanie's was green with a yellow glaze around the top.

During the morning talk by Martin Eidelberg, a Emeritus Professor of Art History at Rutgers, he talked about the factory type production of pottery in the Arts and Crafts movement of the 1890's to 1920's and how the companies would make it look like they had craftsmen who would pursue their artistic freedom, but instead many firms would set up assembly lines where one person would throw (or even cast) the piece and another would apply details and another would glaze it. The idea was to have items that looked like they were individual pieces of art but with exacting consistency as far as the form and color go.

I think Ephraim Faience Pottery is a production shop but they allow its artists to pursue forms and designs that they like while still keeping a decent consistent quality product. As an example, a few years ago the company stopped producing art tiles when their potter who did the tiles did not want to make tiles anymore. So the company stopped offering tiles even though they were popular and I guess added to the bottom line. They could have easily had one of the other artists do the tiles.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Great shot of the Ephraim booth! After seeing your blog I went to their web site and their pottery is fantastic! In one of your photos I noticed that Becky Hansen, formerly of Van Briggle Pottery, is with Ephraim now. Wonder what kind of pots she's throwing for them? Switching from VB to Ephraim is like going from night to day. Thanks! And keep blogging!!

8:11 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Me again.....just letting you know that I bit the bullet and placed an order for 9 Ephraim Faience Pottery vases today. Oh, yes, you'd better believe I let them know it was because of your blog!!

Keep blogging!!


7:01 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Joel and Stephanie,

I hope you don't mind my posting a link to your blog at an Ephraim Pottery discussion site. I was searching for GPI information and your blog turned up in the search.

Best wishes with Stephanie's recovery and your continued adventures with the house.


10:03 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

can anyone identify the large sky blue pitcher in the top photo, to the left, by the pretty blonde lady's head? Chris

7:41 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...


Using the picture you've mentioned, I was just playing a game of Eye Spy with Marilynn Reichel, of Ephraim Faience Pottery, who said that vase is the Calla Lily Pitcher in EFP's Sky glaze - it's only available at '06 & '07 shows.


7:18 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thanks for providing that link for Ephriam Pottery, we had never heard of them before today. From their web site we have learned that they do a show in Pasadena ~ an hour and a half away from us ~ very exciting. We have requested a free catalog and feel like kids checking the mail box for the Toys R Us catalog.

Regards, M & K

7:47 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Does Ephraim give discounts when you buy from them at shows? I know new and old pottery dealers alike do at Pottery Lovers, in Zanesville, Ohio, in July, so I was wondering. M. Kerns

1:41 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

M. Kerns, I would contact John, of Dovetail Antiques, at 608-764-1454, or by email: to get the proper answer to your question. You could also contact Marilynn Reichel, of Ephraim Pottery, at 888-704-pots, or by email: . :) Jen

7:26 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Stephanie and Joel.
Show us a picture of your Ephraim pieces why don't ya?
I bet they look great in your home.
Don W. 04/03/07

7:34 AM  
Anonymous Van Briggle said...

Great choice with the Star Fern!

3:11 AM  

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