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Miranda Thomas

Tracing the Use of the Decorative Scroll in Ceramics History and Its Presence in Other Decorative Arts

Monday, September 20, 2021

2 PM via Zoom

The entrancing decorative scroll was one of the great inventions in the decorative arts, especially in ceramics history.  This lecture will explore its origins, the symbolism it carries through cultural time, and its valuable use in many different applications in ceramics productions.

The scroll's history has only been noticed by a few yet plays a large part in our decorative story.  It is often there yet goes undetected.  In this lecture, Miranda will highlight the scroll pattern structures: how the scroll travels not only around a pot, how it travels through time and around the ceramics world, and its use in decorative arts of textiles, furniture and architecture.  Once one learns to detect it, the scroll becomes an important observational tool for any ceramics or decorative arts enthusiast or collector.

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Miranda Thomas at World Economic Forum, Davos, Switzerland, 2018

Miranda Thomas is a renowned potter and artist who was raised in New York, Italy, Australia, and England and now resides in Vermont.  After receiving a BA in Ceramics (Honors) at West Surrey College of Art and Design in 1981, she apprenticed with Michael Cardew CBE in Cornwall, England and then with Alan Caiger-Smith OBE at Aldermaston Pottery in Berkshire, England. In 1984, she founded Miranda Thomas Pottery at Simon Pearce, Quechee, Vermont. In 1990, she became owner and studio potter of Miranda Thomas Pottery, and is now co-owner and creative director of ShackletonThomas Pottery in Bridgewater, Vermont.

Her ceramics can be found worldwide in many private collections, including those of celebrities and dignitaries.  Her pieces have been commissioned by the Clinton and Obama administrations, and the United Nations Association, and they have been presented to many foreign heads of state.  In her pottery, she mixes her exhaustive knowledge of pottery traditions and techniques from around the world.  Miranda is constantly inspired by time spent living in the countryside and by her walks in the Vermont woods.

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