INFO Heath Features 04

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.

  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.

  3. Catherine Bailey and Robin Petravic

    are co-owners of Heath Ceramics. As stewards of Edith Heath’s original vision, they have transformed and shaped the company from a small-scale pottery to a maker of goods for the home.

    Robin Petravic is Managing Director, setting the direction for long-term viability and making a strong contribution to the local community. He has a Master of Fine Arts in Design from Stanford University and, before buying Heath Ceramics, worked independently as a product design consultant in consumer goods and technology.

    Cathy Bailey leads Heath Ceramics’ design direction as Creative Director, while honoring the company’s long history in craft and manufacturing. Bailey holds a Bachelor of Industrial Design degree from Syracuse University and founded the San Francisco-based product design consultancy One & Co., all the while cultivating her love for interior design.

  4. Allan Collier

    is a freelance curator specializing in modern craft and design. Selected exhibitions include The Modern Eye: Craft and Design in Canada, 1945-1980 (Art Gallery of Greater Victoria, 2011), Life with Clay: Pottery and Sculpture by Jan and Helga Grove (Art Gallery of Greater Victoria, 2017), and Modern in the Making: Postwar Craft and Design in British Columbia (Vancouver Art Gallery, 2020).

  5. Drew Heath Johnson

    is Curator of Photography and Visual Culture at the Oakland Museum of California, where he has worked since 1989. Despite his middle name, Johnson is not related to Brian and Edith Heath. His many exhibitions at the museum include Capturing Light: Masterpieces of California Photography, 1850–2000, Fertile Ground: Art and Community in California, and Dorothea Lange: Politics of Seeing, which traveled to London, Paris, and Nashville. Among his many duties is guardianship and sharing of the Dorothea Lange Archive and Collection, which holds more than 6,000 vintage prints and 40,000 negatives, along with personal correspondence, field notes, proof sheets, and working documents from the artist. Johnson is the recipient of a California Book Award for the catalog of Capturing Light. A native Californian, he has been a student of photography since purchasing his first daguerreotype at the age of 14.

  6. Waverly B. Lowell

    is a partner in The ONDA Group archival consultants, and a Fellow of the Society of American Archivists. She is Curator Emerita of the Environmental Design Archives at the University of California, Berkeley and has held positions with the National Archives and the California Historical Society. Her projects include the exhibit Unbuilt San Francisco: Ambition and Imagination and the publications Living Modern: A Biography of Greenwood Common, Landscape at Berkeley: The First 100 Years and Design on the Edge: 100 Years of Architecture at the University of California, Berkeley.

  7. JC Miller

    is a partner at Vallier Design Associates in Point Richmond, California, and the former Director of the Landscape Architecture Certificate Program at UC Berkeley Extension. He currently teaches the History of the Designed Landscape online for the University of California, Los Angeles. He worked for more than a decade in the Robert Royston office and, as a principal, assisted Royston in the design and execution of his final projects. He is coauthor of Modern Public Gardens: Robert Royston and the Suburban Park and the forthcoming Robert Royston, Landscape Architect, a volume in Library of American Landscape History’s Masters of Modern Landscape Design series.

  8. Julie Muñiz

    is an independent curator and creative consultant in the San Francisco Bay Area. Focusing her practice on the intersecting areas of art, design, and craft, Muñiz has worked with both institutional and private art collections on both coasts. Since 2015, she has researched and overseen the historical collections of the Brian and Edith Heath Foundation and the Heath Ceramics Collection, both currently housed at Heath Ceramics in San Francisco. She received her Master of Arts from the Bard Graduate Center in New York and has held positions of increasing responsibility at museums such as the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, and the Oakland Museum of California.

  9. Rosa Novak

    is a researcher at the Brian and Edith Heath Foundation. She received her Bachelor of Fine Arts in Ceramics from the California College of the Arts. Novak has given talks on Edith Heath’s values-based design ideology at the National Council on Education for the Ceramic Arts and the Environmental Design Archives at UC Berkeley. She is a cofounder of Mutual Stores, an artist-run space and residency program in Oakland, California.

  10. Ezra Shales

    Ph.D., is Professor of Art History at the Massachusetts College of Art and Design. His second book, The Shape of Craft (Reaktion Books, 2017), prompted a reviewer to identify him as a “philosopher of the factory floor.” He has contributed essays to exhibition catalogs for Polly Apfelbaum, Tom Joyce, and Shari Mendelson, and is currently writing introductions for new editions of David Pye’s seminal books The Nature of Design (1964) and The Nature and Art of Workmanship (1968).

  11. Mara Holt Skov

    is an art and design historian, curator, author, and Associate Professor at California College of the Arts where she teaches graduate and undergraduate courses on the history of design and culture. She tracks macrotrends across all creative disciplines and champions design for overlooked human needs, especially aging and death. She most enjoys helping students to find their own paths toward meaningful creative lives so that they can work to make positive change in the world. Her most recent project is entitled The Impermanence of Things (2019).

  12. Jay Stewart

    is the Trustee of the Brian and Edith Foundation. She knew the Heaths from the time of her birth to their deaths; at their request, she assisted with their personal affairs in their later years. Since Edith Heath’s death in 2005, Stewart has devolved the Heaths’ estate, placing their extensive archives at the Environmental Design Archives, UC Berkeley and assembling a study collection of Heath Ceramics’ products. With her husband, Peter Macnair, Stewart is a peripatetic curator, consulting on the material culture and ethnology of First Nations of the Northwest Coast. Exhibitions and publications include To the Totem Forests: Emily Carr and Contemporaries Interpret Coastal Villages (Art Gallery of Greater Victoria, 1998), Down from the Shimmering Sky: Masks of the Northwest Coast (Vancouver Art Gallery, 1998), Listening to the Ancestors: The Art of Native Life in the Pacific Northwest (National Museum of the American Indian, 2000–2006), and Raven Travelling: Two Centuries of Haida Art (Vancouver Art Gallery 2006).

  13. Brian Trimble

    is Assistant Professor of Art Education at California State University, Long Beach (CSULB). He served for many years as Curator of Education, Interim Director, and Associate Director of the University Art Museum at CSULB (now the Carolyn Campagna Kleefeld Contemporary Art Museum). From 2014 to 2018, he oversaw the preservation initiative for the renowned sculpture collection on campus in partnership with the Getty Conservation Institute, and in 2019 he cofounded Long Beach Architecture Week. He is dedicated to a social justice approach to art education and is interested in community-based practices that promote learning for students and help improve the lives of community members.

  14. Emily Vigor

    is the Digital and Collections Archivist at the Environmental Design Archives at UC Berkeley where she coordinates the arrangement, description, preservation, and accessibility of paper and digital collections. She holds a Master of Arts in Art History from Richmond University in London and a Master of Library and Information Science with a concentration in Archives from San Jose State University. Her research interests include a critical examination of collecting strategies in archives to include more underrepresented and diverse voices, and the accessibility of archives and primary resources online. She has worked as an archival consultant for Herzog & de Meuron’s Kramlich Residence in Napa Valley, California; the Drawing Matter collection in Somerset, England; and Michael Heizer’s collection at LACMA (Los Angeles County Museum of Art).

Co-published with the Berkeley Design Books series.

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  1. Edith Heath: Philosophies
    $60 $48

    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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