Paul Brown, Artist and Potter (18 July 1921- 8 February 2000)
Brown only spent about twenty-two years of his very full and interesting life designing and creating pots that were extraordinary for their time.
I realised it was necessary to place his creative work in some sort of context with his entire life. He never earned his living by the sale of his work, so was free to explore and create without the restraints of ever having to consider what was fashionable or saleable. This allowed the innovative spiritual quality of his work to remain interesting up to the present day.
After returning from the war Brown spent a few months teaching art at A.S. Neill’s alternative boarding school, Summerhill, Suffolk, and a short art course at the Royal Academy in London, before beginning his studies at the Royal College of Art.
Brown returned to the RCA to complete his studies. He began with painting but changed to the ceramics department. His work was mostly designing and making domestic ware from casts, where he was already developing a talent for product design.
His final college thesis was called A Comment On Some Small Potteries. All his life he asked the question, should pottery be functional? A great admirer of William Morris and Henry Mackintosh, he believed in the importance of genuine local craftsman and their skills using natural local raw materials. He graduated from the RCA in July 1953.
Paul Browns Ceramics in Notable Collections:
Victoria and Albert Museum London (ref; 58/3423); York Art Gallery (Bill Ismay collection); Scottish National Art Gallery, Edinburgh; National Museum Of Wales, Aberystwyth University Gallery; Mary Abbot Hall, Kendall.