Bernard Leach is regarded as one of the great British potters of the 20th century. He spent eleven years in Japan, from 1909 to 1920, after which he returned to England to set up the St. Ives pottery and to spread the message of ceramics, the Oriental way. His influence through his writings and as mentor of many successful potters (e.g Michael Cardew, Harry Davis) has earned him a reputation as pivotal reformer of Western ceramics.
Leach made a plethora of pots, which were largely influenced by his ‘Sung Standard’ – what he perceived as Korean and Japanese peasant pottery – humble and unassuming, but at the same time of an indisputable beauty. It was to this ‘standard’ that he devoted his life’s work.
Leach not only made pots, but was also responsible for a number of publications, e.g. A Potter in Japan and his pioneering A Potter’s Book – also dubbed ‘The Potter’s Bible’.