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Edith Heath: Philosophies

Jennifer M. Volland, Chris Marino
300+ full colour
245 x 175mm
Spring 2021

Edith Heath: Philosophies serves as the definitive resource on Edith Kiertzner Heath (1911–2005) and the history of Heath Ceramics, emphasizing the philosophical foundations and influences of one of the most significant creative forces in post–World War II America. Heath considered her dinnerware more than a collection of simple objects; rather, it was a commentary on good design and what she believed was indicative of a new and more informal lifestyle in postwar America. This book offers in-depth commentary on the many themes that shaped Heath’s ceramics practice—the environment, feminism, education, experimentation, architecture, politics, societal trends, collaborations—while also solidifying the relevance of Edith Heath’s story in contemporary life and society.

Contents include a foreword, preface, visual historical timeline, selected product and dinnerware glaze history, and a collection of essays contributed by historians and designers, all of whom have conducted specialized research in the Brian and Edith Heath/Heath Ceramics Collection at the Environmental Design Archives (EDA), UC Berkeley. Highlighting the richness of the EDA’s collection, the book utilizes rarely seen images, many of which show the character of their original archival state. The interdisciplinary nature of the content and visually engaging illustrative materials will appeal to a wide audience interested in postwar design, material culture, and California history.

Contributors include Catherine Bailey and Robin Petravic, Allan Collier, Drew Heath Johnson, Waverly B. Lowell, Chris Marino, JC Miller, Julie M. Muñiz, Rosa Novak, Ezra Shales, Mara Holt Skov, Jay Stewart, Brian Trimble, Emily Vigor, and Jennifer M. Volland.

  1. Jennifer M. Volland

    is an independent curator and writer based in Southern California. Since 2014, she has been researching the life of ceramicist Edith Heath; in addition to her editorial role on Edith Heath: Philosophies, she served as the consulting producer on the award-winning documentary Heath Ceramics: The Making of a California Classic (KCET Artbound, 2019) and is the consulting curator on Edith Heath: A Life in Clay (Oakland Museum of California, 2020). Her past projects include Cabin Fever (Vancouver Art Gallery, 2018), Frank Bros.: The Store That Modernized Modern (University Art Museum at CSULB, 2017), and Grand Hotel: Redesigning Modern Life (Vancouver Art Gallery, 2013). She received her Master of Arts in Architecture from UCLA.

  2. Chris Marino

    is the Curator of the Environmental Design Archives at UC Berkeley and Berkeley Design Books Series Editor, directing a full archival program for architecture, landscape architecture, and planning collections. Previously, she served as Reference and Outreach Archivist at the EDA, and as a Project Archivist at the University of California, Santa Barbara's Architecture & Design Collection at the Art, Design & Architecture Museum. Marino received her Master of Library and Information Science with an Archival Studies specialization from UCLA and a Bachelor of Arts in Ethnic Studies from the University of California, San Diego.

Co-published with the Berkeley Design Books series.

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  1. Edith Heath: Philosophies
    $75 $60

    Edith Heath: Philosophies traces the remarkable life and work of American designer, ceramist and businesswoman Edith Heath. The book brings together 14 essays about Edith's lasting impact on design, architecture and maker philosophy with over 300 full-colour archival photographs and historical documents.

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