potteryHeath Ceramics Partners with Potter Adam Silverman to Launch New Heath Ceramics Retail-Gallery-Studio Facility in Los Angeles, Fall/Winter 08

Marking its 60th Anniversary, the Historic, Mid-Century Era, California Pottery Launches Its First Retail Outlet Outside of the San Francisco Bay Area, and its Second Store in 60 Years

(Sausalito, Calif.–September 2, 2008)
After years of mutual admiration, two notable names in California pottery: Heath Ceramics and potter Adam Silverman (ATWATER POTTERY) are coming together to forge a partnership by launching a new retail studio facility in Los Angeles this December. Heath Ceramics’ new Los Angeles outpost is located at 7525 Beverly Boulevard, Los Angeles, (at Sierra Bonita Avenue) in the central Los Angeles’ design district. The new Los Angeles facility is Heath Ceramics’ second retail presence after its first factory store opened in 1948 at its original Sausalito location. It will also offer a gallery and studio that will focus on ceramic research and small run, custom work.

The new 5,000 sq ft facility is designed by Commune, a highly regarded Los Angeles design firm that has created unique spaces for clients as diverse as Oliver Peoples, The Ace Hotel and Ammo restaurant. Managed by Silverman, the facility will house a large retail area, a gallery space, a ceramic studio and a garden courtyard where gatherings and events will be held.

The store will carry the complete collection of Heath Ceramics dinnerware products with extensive inventory housed at the store. Like in Sausalito, both first quality and factory seconds of Heath Ceramics dinnerware will be available, along with its newest line, the Chez Panisse collection, designed in collaboration with renowned chef Alice Waters and Los Angeles-based clothing and homewares designer Christina Kim of Dosa.

Heath Ceramics Creative Director Catherine Bailey and Silverman have long been inspired by mid 20th century Scandinavian ceramic companies like Arabia, Royal Copenhagan, and Saxbo, which housed artist studios. These iconic design houses would be run by a chief artist/designer who would bring in other artists/designers to work in the studios. Some hand-thrown works would be sold as one of-a-kind pieces, and some would make their way into production. Following this model, Silverman’s role as studio director will coordinate a visiting artist program, as well as the gallery program. Bailey and Silverman have conceived Heath Ceramic’s studio and store around this tradition.

The studio will focus on creating original work for the two Heath Ceramics stores, as well as small, custom jobs for the local Los Angeles design community. The gallery space will host shows of work sympathetic to the Heath Ceramics aesthetic, mission or vast array of interests.

Along with Heath Ceramics dinnerware and special edition Adam Silverman pieces, a broad range of unique home accessories, created by other artisans, will also be available at the new store. Like its sister store in Sausalito, the store will be a destination unto itself, attracting the Los Angeles design community, as well as everyone interested in objects with a conscientious design, craft and manufacturing background.

Visitors will have access to handcrafted products from dinnerware and flatware to wood chopping boards and glassware. The store will offer the Heath gift registry service, which is fast-becoming known for its unique collection of house wares. The store’s inventory will also include design and architecture books, as well as cookbooks, which appeal to foodie and design types, all personally chosen by Bailey or Silverman. Local California delicacies such as June Taylor Foodstuffs, including delectable homemade pots of jams and jellies can also be found at the store.

The stores wares highlight work by artisans and craft-based businesses who share Heath Ceramics values, philosophy and sense of design. The items are expertly selected by its Owner and Creative Director Catherine Bailey; all are objects she uses in her life and are a great match for others who are sensitive to materials, shape and artistic expression and sustainability. The store also appeals to customers who are responsive to the values of craft and manufacturing by companies from whom they purchase.

Highlights of the Heath Ceramics store include English “cutlery king” DAVID MELLOR, a designer-manufacturer whose steel flatware is still immaculately made at the designers’ original factory in Sheffield, England and a selection of fine glassware from the family-owned Danish-based glassworks HOLMEGAARD. Its line features items from its glass-blowing tradition dating back 175 years.

One-of-a-kind pots and other vessels, created by ADAM SILVERMAN for Heath Ceramics, demonstrate his love for unusual glazes using firing techniques that leave mottled colorations, ashy residue and scars. A departure from its clean lines and pared down aesthetic, the Heath Ceramics vessels by Silverman will also feature his signature lava-like surfaces that he grinds down to expose bubbles beneath.

“We’re excited to work with Adam Silverman and bring the best of craft-based artisans to a broader California audience,” says Heath Ceramics Creative Director and Co-owner Cathy Bailey. “We believe that the craft of manufacturing has, to a great extent, been lost as a value in American culture. By working in partnership with Adam in a unique retail/workshop model, we can make small steps to strive to retain it, giving a boost to the local Los Angeles pottery scene, and continue our tradition of collaborating with artists.”

Previous collaborations with Heath Ceramics include a unique collection of vases by artist Roy McMakin; a teacup collection “Phases of the Moon” by Christina Kim of Los Angeles-based housewares and clothing label Dosa; and a dinnerware collection designed specifically for the revered restaurant Chez Panisse, a collaboration with Christina Kim and renowned chef and author Alice Waters.

About Adam Silverman: Adam Silverman grew up in Connecticut and studied architecture, art and design at the Rhode Island School of Design. After graduating Adam moved to Los Angeles where he practiced architecture, then started a clothing company X-Large. In 2003 he became a professional potter under the auspices of Atwater Pottery, after 25 years of making pots for friends and family,

His work has attracted international attention from the art world. Silverman's ceramic vessels are sculptural in form, rich in texture, and display a sophisticated sense of color. Silverman embraces experimentation and with it he has developed complicated crater and blister glazes that push both the boundaries of convention and the limits of the materials. Bold and dynamic curves are juxtaposed against craggy molten surfaces in a body of work that puts a modern urban spin on an ancient art form.

About Heath Ceramics: The late Edith Heath, was a defining influence of twentieth century American design, creating distinctive handcrafted ceramic dinnerware and architectural tiles that were unlike anything commercially available at the time. She and her husband Brian founded Heath Ceramics in 1948, which quickly became a California institution, symbolizing the creative free spirit of California. Heath Ceramics dinnerware has been used in homes for more than half a century, and also in other restaurants, including chef Alice Water’s Chez Panisse and Brasseries 44 at the Royalton Hotel.

Heath Ceramics continues as one of California’s last remaining mid-century era potteries, compared to several hundred which once operated in the state. It continues to produce and sell handcrafted dinnerware and tiles at its original Sausalito factory location. In 2003, industrial designer Catherine Bailey and her husband mechanical engineer Robin Petravic bought Heath Ceramics when Edith and Brian Heath could no longer run the company. The new owners continue to revitalize Heath’s original designs with new ideas and by engaging talented artists and designers, while maintaining Heath’s design tradition.

For more information, contact 415 332 3732 ext 19
or visit www.heathceramics.com.


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