PAUL SCOTT

OUR AMERICA/WHOSE AMERICA?

2022 | Group Exhibition at Ferrin Contemporary | North Adams, MA

Our America/Whose America? Is a “call and response” exhibition between contemporary artists and historic ceramic objects.

View the exhibition page here.

 

NEW AMERICAN SCENERY: The Art of Paul Scott

2022 | Solo Exhibition at The Albany Institute of History & Art | Albany, NY

New American Scenery Has been exhibiting internationally since 2019.
This exhibition features the artwork of Scott, paired with transferwares, prints and paintings from the Albany Institute’s collection.

View the exhibition page here.

 

NEW AMERICAN SCENERY


Selections from the Series

Guide & Glossary HERE

English, b. 1953
lives and works in Cumbria, UK

Paul Scott is a Cumbrian-based artist with a diverse practice and an international reputation. Creating individual pieces that blur the boundaries between fine art, craft and design, he is well known for research into printed vitreous surfaces, as well as his characteristic blue and white artworks in glazed ceramic.

Scott’s artworks can be found in public collections around the globe – including The National Museum of Art, Architecture and Design Norway, the Victoria and Albert Museum London, National Museums Liverpool, Carnegie Museum of Art, Pittsburgh and Brooklyn Art Museum USA. Commissioned work can be found in a number of UK museums as well as public places in the North of England, including Carlisle, Maryport, Gateshead and Newcastle Upon Tyne. He has also completed large-scale works in Hanoi, Vietnam and Guldagergård public sculpture park in Denmark.

A combination of rigorous research, studio practice, curation, writing and commissioned work ensures that his work is continually developing. It is fundamentally concerned with the re-animation of familiar objects, landscape, pattern and a sense of place. He was Professor of Ceramics at Oslo National Academy of the Arts (KHiO) from 2011–2018. Scott received his Bachelors of Art Education and Design at Saint Martin’s College and Ph.d at the Manchester Institute for Research and Innovation in Art and Design in Manchester, England.

His current research project New American Scenery has been enabled by an Alturas Foundation artist award, Ferrin Contemporary, and funding from Arts Council England. More on New American Scenery, here.

Paul Scott is represented by Ferrin Contemporary in the USA and The Scottish Gallery in Scotland.

ON HIS WORK

Paul Scott, a material-based conceptual artist, creates ceramic work that blurs the boundaries between art, craft, and design. With a penchant for rescuing cast-offs, he restores them to a new life by using them as a canvas for biting social commentary. His work tells stories that explore the unexpected movement of images through materials, media, cultures, politics, histories, and geographies, inviting us to see these objects in a new way.

Scott is an authority on printed vitreous surfaces. His research, artwork, and book, Ceramics in Print, has been instrumental in the phenomenal growth of printmaking techniques in contemporary ceramics.

Scott’s latest book, Horizon: Transferware and Contemporary Ceramics, co-edited with Knut Astrup Bull, explores the complex journey of ideas and images to their realization in blue and white, then multicoloured tablewares. Blending historical enquiry with contemporary practice, the book illustrates how artists re-appropriate this historical genre. Text and visual essays explore unexpected political and cultural themes, changing the way we view these familiar objects.

In the fall of 2013, Scott, a resident of the UK, traveled in the US, visiting museum collections of transferware and participating in artist residencies at the Clay Studio in Philadelphia and Project Art in Massachusetts. His series, American Scenery, presents a striking duality with current American imagery applied to antique china pieces that brings the past forward, exposes us to how we have shaped our landscape, and hints at what the future may hold.

Scott embarked on a new body of work in 2014 that involves the physical collaging of antique fragments using traditional ceramic conservation methods to join the elements. The mending, melding, and juxtaposition of the separate components creates completely new work, proving, again, that the whole is greater than the sum of its parts.

Scott’s work can be found in public and private collections around the globe. Ferrin Contemporary represents Scott in the US. His work can be viewed online at FerrinContemporary.com, at Project Art in Cummington, MA, and at various venues in the US.

Castle Garden & Battery New York, transferware platter by Enoch Wood & Sons c.1830

“New American Scenery, the Background….”

 

Transferware:

In the late 18th century, blue and white Staffordshire transferwares were developed to imitate painted Chinese export porcelains. By the early 19th century printed patterns had expanded to include images of the Grand Tour and of Empire. A particular dark blue version of the genre became popular in the United States, & from Liverpool, Staffordshire potters exported huge quantities of decorated wares depicting American subjects & landscape. Later that century these were to become highly collectible. … Collector William Cowper Prime asserted that transferware “ranks in historical collections with the vases of Greece…men will say that these show the tastes, these illustrate the home life, of the men and women who were the founders and rulers of the American Republic”.

 

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Paul Scott, Cumbrian Blue(s), New American Scenery, Across the Borderline (4) (Trumpian Campaigne), 2020

“New American Scenery, Across the Borderline Series….”

 

Series of platters depicting the border between the US and Mexico using imagery culled from the Wedgwood archive and popular media to address the theme of immigration.Background:

The New American Scenery, Across the Borderline series of artworks reference the international boundary line first drawn in the sand, and along the shifting banks of the Rio Grande river at the end of Mexican American War in 1848. They specifically depict the border fences first created after 2006, when President George Bush signed the Secure Fence Act intended to reduce illegal immigration to the United States from Mexico. The act initiated a boom in border construction and surveillance technology, so that by May 2011 there were 649 miles of barriers in place. Between the physical walls and fences, additional surveillance equipment alert US Border Patrol agents to suspected border crossings. A whole self-contained, publicly funded economy had been created.

 

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Cumbrian Blue(s), Indian Point cup plate, A/P. Transferware print on pearlware cup plate, 104mm. dia. Collaborative work with Paul Holdway (former head of engraving at Spode). Tissue print transfer taken from a copper plate engraved by Paul Holdway, Paul Scott 2021.

“New American Scenery, Cup Plates”

 

In the early part of the nineteenth century, transfer printed blue and white tablewares from Staffordshire were exported to North America in their tens of thousands. Pictorial in nature, their vitrified designs remediated print from book or magazine illustration, melding with floral and botanical borders. Scenes of the newly independent United States formed a significant part of this material. These transferwares included ‘Cup Plates’, tiny coasters used to protect furniture from marks whilst the diner drank coffee or tea from the cup’s accompanying saucer. Measuring between 9 to 11 cm (3.5 to 4 inches) across, the plates are characterised by deep cobalt blue prints melted into a pearlware glaze. Images and patterns were sometimes specifically designed and made for the small form, others (above) were collaged from tissue print details of larger patterns. Because of their small scale, flaws in the prints or their application are more obvious than on larger wares and they have their own aesthetic.

 

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Enoch Wood & Sons transferware platter, Cape Coast Castle on the Gold Coast Africa c.1820.

“New American Scenery, Cape Coast Castle….”

 

This has a direct link to toppled Bristol statue of slave trader Edward Colston of the Royal African Company (1680 – 1692)… Its administration centre was Cape Coast Castle in current day Ghana. Commenting on the UK’s Black Lives Matter protests in the wake of George Floyd’s death on BBC Newsnight, Aliyah Hasinah explained how the UK has ‘had a longer time to marinate racism, to deeply entrench it through the use of scientific racism, eugenics, art, culture, business, politics, policies… In the same TV programme American actor Clark Peters talked about UK racism being ‘cloaked in beautiful language’.

Characterised by a dark blue palette of extraordinary depth & subtlety blue and white transferware was part of the ‘new media’ of its day… huge quantities of pictorial Staffordshire wares were exported to the US in early 19th century.… This platter is a perfect exemplar of the cloaking of racist history in ‘beautiful’ form… The original source of Enoch Wood’s transferware design was an engraving by John Hill (1806) after a painting by George Webster (1799), commissioned by HRH the Duke of Clarence as part of a campaign against abolitionists.. This platter was from a series of marine views made exclusively for US market.… In the original images both ships and castle flags were British, but Woods’ ‘slaver’ sails under Stars & Stripes.

 

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Cumbrian Blue(s), New American Scenery, Ghost Gardens of Detroit No:2. Transferware collage on salvaged Syracuse China with pearlware glaze, 30cm dia. Paul Scott 2019.

“New American Scenery, Flint, Belle Island & The Ghost Gardens of Detroit”

 

I grew up in Birmingham, Britain’s ‘Motor City’, where the local economy relied on car manufacturers…. Austin, Morris (later British Leyland), Mini, Rover and all the associated motor suppliers. As a student in the early 1970’s, holiday working included ‘industrial cleaning’ in the huge Austin works in Longbridge… then two summers were spent in an engineering factory in Balsall Heath, assembling brake pipe adjuster clamps (amongst other things). When car production eventually ceased in the city, unemployment, and the impoverishment of communities swiftly followed. I clearly recall the dereliction, then later demolition of huge industrial sites, and the yawing empty spaces. A few years later, similar scenes also became familiar to me in the Staffordshire pottery towns as the British ceramics industry all but collapsed. I was thus well aware, from first hand experience, of the effects of deindustrialisation on urban environments and communities. A series of early Cumbrian Blue(s) artworks reflected the ruin and decay of my home town in prints and tiled panels…

 

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Paul Scott, “Cumbrian Blue(s), New American Scenery, Fleurs.de.sel’s New York, Hot Dogs, No. 1 (one of a set of twelve plates)”, 2019, in-glaze screen print (decal) on salvaged Syracuse China with pearlware glaze, 11 x 11 x 1″

“New American Scenery, New York and Transferwares”

 

In the early part of the nineteenth century, tens of thousands of printed blue and white tablewares from England were exported to North America. Scenes of the newly independent United States were used in a myriad of designs and were characterized by a deep blue semiotic. Alongside printed wallpapers and textiles these transferwares formed part of the new media of their day. Pictorial in nature, their vitrified designs remediated prints from book or magazine illustration, melding them with floral and botanical borders. By the end of the century, they became highly collectible and the subject of a number of books, including RT Haines Halsey’s classic ‘New York on Dark Blue Staffordshire Pottery’. Published in 1899, the limited edition tome plotted the history of the genre, illustrated by sumptuous photogravures in blue depicting a comprehensive range of pictorial transferwares. 120 years later, in my New American Scenery series of artworks I updates some of these early subject matters of New York using 21st century alternatives.

 

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CURRENT + RECENT EXHIBITIONS

PAUL SCOTT WORK ON VIEW IN PUBLIC COLLECTIONS

Mount Holyoke College Art Museum:
(right) George Inness, American (1825-1894), ?Saco Ford: Conway Meadows? 1876,
oil on canvas.
(center top) Homer Dodge Martin, American (1836-1897), ?A Glimpse of Lake Placid,? 1887, oil on canvas.
(center bottom) Paul Scott, ?Scott?s Cumbrian Blue(s), American Scenery, Hudson River, Indian Point No. 4, ? 2015, ceramic transfer decal.
(left) Albert Bierstadt, American (1830-1902), ?Hetch Hetchy Canyon,? 1875, oil on canvas

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Paul Scott’s work has been acquired by museums around the world.

Visit these museums in the US that have recently acquired work from Scott’s American Scenery series.

RISD Museum
MFA Boston
Brooklyn Museum
Newark Museum
Carnegie Museum of Art
Mount Holyoke Art Museum
Chipstone Foundation

OTHER PUBLIC COLLECTIONS

Air UK/KLM Airways, Northern Arts
Alturas Foundation, USA
Arizona State University Art Museum, Tempe, Arizona, USA
Ateliers D’Art de France, Paris, France
Australian National University Canberra
Bankfield Museum, Halifax, West Yorkshire, England, UK
Boston Museum of Fine Arts, Boston MA, USA
Brighton Museum and Art Gallery, Brighton, England, UK
Brooklyn Museum, Brooklyn, NY, USA
Bury Art Museum and Sculpture Centre, Bury, Lancashire, UK
Carnegie Museum of Art, Pittsburgh, PA, USA
Ceramic Research Center, Guldagergård, Denmark
Chatsworth House, Bakewell, Derbyshire, UK
Chipstone Foundation, Milwaukee, WI, USA
Cleveland Contemporary Art Collection, Middlesbrough, England, UK
Contemporary Art Society for: Plymouth Museum and Art Gallery, Plymouth, England; Bristol Museum and Art Gallery, Bristol, England; National Museum of Wales at Cardiff, Wales’ National Museums Liverpool, England, UK
Copeland Borough Council Collection, Oregon College of Art and Craft Collection, Portland, OR, USA
The Crafts Council, London, England, UK
Cumbria County Council Print Loan Collection, Cumbria, England, UK
Danish Arts Foundation, Copenhagen, Denmark
Denison University Granville Ohio USA
Emily Carr University, Vancouver, Canada
Expo Ceramic Museum, Kyonggido, South Korea
Gallery Oldham, Oldham, England, UK
Gardiner Museum, Toronto, Canada
Gustavsberg Porcelain Museum, Gustavsberg, Sweden
Handlesbankens, Stockholm, Sweden
Hatton Gallery, University of Newcastle Upon Tyne, England, UK
International Ceramic Center, Skælskør, Denmark
International Ceramic Studios, Kecskemét, Hungary
Jam Factory, Adelaide, Australia
Kohler Company, USA, Red Deer College, Alberta, Canada
Leicestershire Education Committee Collection for Schools and Colleges, Leicestershire, England, UK
Manchester Metropolitan University Library, Special Collections, Manchester, England, UK
Manchester City Art Gallery, Manchester, England, UK
Mount Holyoke College Art Museum, South Hadley, MA, USA
Musé Ariana, Geneva, Switzerland
Museum Bellerive, Collection of Decorative Arts, Zurich
National Museum, Stockholm, Sweden
National Museum of Art Architecture and Design, Oslo, Norway
National Museums Liverpool, Liverpool, England, UK
Nelson Mandela Foundation, Houghton, South Africa
Newark Art Museum, Newark, NJ, USA
Newcastle Arts Centre, Newcastle-Upon-Tyne, England, UK
Nordenfjeldske Kunstinustrimuseum (National Museum Decorative Arts) Trondheim, Norway
Potteries Museum, Stoke on Trent, England, UK
RISD Museum, Providence, RI, USA
Rörstrand Museum Lidköping, Sweden
Shipley Art Gallery, Gateshead, Tyne and Wear, England, UK
Statens Konstråd (National Public Art Council) Sweden
Touchstones, Rochdale, England, UK
Tullie House Carlisle Museum and Art Gallery, Carlisle, Cumbria, England, UK
University of Wales Ceramics Collection, Cardiff, Wales, UK
University South Australia, Adelaide, Australia
Victoria and Albert Museum, London, UK
York City Museum and Art Gallery, York, England, UK

CATALOGS & PUBLICATIONS


  • Published by University of Pennsylvania Press, Third Edition, 2012
  • Ceramics and Print presents a full range of techniques for printing on clay from low-tech monoprints to digital laser decals. The latest digital technologies, 3-d printing, photographic techniques, and studio-based transfer processes are explored in detail. “It is inspiring.”
  • 144-page, full-color, softbound book

  • Published by Arnoldsche Art Publishers, Stuttgart, Germany edited by Paul Scott and Knut Astrup Bull
  • An exploration of the impact and importance of printed tablewares, now making a comeback. The new artwork reflects a significant cultural impact around the world. Horizon melds historical enquiry with contemporary practice.
  • 220 pages, illustrated hardcover

‘Raid the Ice Box Now’ Digital Catalog

  • Produced by the Rhode Island School of Design Museum, 2019
  • To celebrate the 50th anniversary of its exhibition Raid the Icebox I with Andy Warhol, the RISD Museum is engaging contemporary artists and designers Pablo Bronstein, Nicole Eisenman, Pablo Helguera, Beth Katleman, Simone Leigh, Sebastian Ruth, Paul Scott, and Triple Canopy to create new bodies of work or create a unique curatorial project using the museum as a site for critical, creative production and presentation. Employing the galleries and digital platforms as well as spaces beyond the museum walls, these artists will question dominant narratives and highlight the strengths and idiosyncrasies of the museum’s collection, which includes more than 100,000 works spanning ancient times to the present. A landmark example of artist-curated museum exhibitions, Raid the Icebox I with Andy Warhol (1970) presented entire sections of objects as they appeared in storage, with little or no connoisseurial regard for their condition, authenticity, or art historical status. It remains one of the most celebrated and subversive exhibitions in contemporary art history.
  • Raid the Icebox Now is made possible by a lead grant from the National Endowment for the Arts with additional support from the RISD Museum Associates, Judy and Robert Mann, Taylor Box Company, and a generous in-kind gift from Meyer Sound Laboratories.

SELECT PRESS


“On the Threshold: Paul Scott New American Scenery”

Essay by Jo Dahn

When he began to experiment with printing on ceramics Paul Scott soon found himself in liminal territory: his creative practice was becoming unclassifiable. ‘In those days’, he has said, ‘there was no-one around me who was doing anything remotely similar, but that’s a double-edged sword: it launches you into a no-man’s-land, because you’re not a painter or a fine art printmaker and you’re not a potter or a craftsperson … In a way I enjoyed it immensely because I was doing things that people hadn’t seen before.’

 

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“Paul Scott’s Confected Landscapes and Contemporary Vignettes”

Essay by Amy Gogarty

The work disccussed in this article relates to reasearch conducted during the course of his PhD, yet it embodies themes that have preoccupied him for some time. These include theories of picturesque landscape painting; the remediation and circulation in print form of such painting; domestic ceramic objects printed with landscape imagery and a host of contemporary issues concerning relationships between human civilization and the natural world.

 

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 “Exhibition | ‘Home Truths,’ Paul Scott’s Brutal Blue and White Porcelain Plates”

Cfile.Capsule

Re-purposing these cultural artifacts in such a way as to offer new narrative interpretations that encourage re-examination. Drawing from his encyclopedic knowledge of and fascination with the material, he alters, erases and adds new images to the intricately detailed scenes and patterns of these domestic items, whereby the imagery is ruptured and recalibrated for a contemporary world. Scott’s interventions enable him to explore a range of issues from ecology to the refugee crisis.

 

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ARTIST NEWS


NCECA PITTSBURGH

REVIVE, REMIX, RESPOND The Frick Pittsburgh 7227 Reynolds Street, Pittsburgh Group show of contemporary artists who are breathing new life into the ceramic medium by reinvigorating age-old motifs, processes, and...

New York Ceramics & Glass Fair 2018

Ferrin Contemporary at the NEW YORK CERAMICS & GLASS FAIR 2018 Jan 18–21, 2018 Kurt Weiser, "Random House (globe)" 2017, porcelain, glaze, china paint, metal, 30 x 14 x 14"....

C-File: RE-Reamimate, Repair, Mend, and Meld

Bill Rogers, Managing Editor of C-File, reviews RE-Reanimate, Repair, Mend and Meld at Ferrin Contemporary.  “The aesthetics of and philosophical questions surrounding repairs were explored in-depth with RE-Reanimate, Repair, Mend…

RE—Reanimate, Repair, Mend and Meld

RE—REANIMATE, REPAIR, MEND AND MELD co-curated by Paul Scott and Andrew Baseman a group show of work by contemporary ceramic artists explores the issues of conservation, restoration, over-consumption, reuse, and…

Year in Review 2015

YEAR IN REVIEW 2015 A review of last year's highlights and trends with special thanks to all who made it possible with their art, interest, encouragement, and support. Click here...

ANTIQUES: Getting the Blues

In its January–February 2016 issue, The Magazine ANTIQUES featured Shax Riegler’s article “Getting the Blues: Transfer ware translated by three contemporary artists.” Paul Scott, Andrew Raftery, and Don Moyer were…

New York Ceramics & Glass Fair 2016

Ferrin Contemporary presents Paul Scott in “Scott’s Cumbrian Blue(s): American Scenery” at the New York Ceramics & Glass Fair 2016. Public Lecture: January 22, 2pm Join us for a lecture…

Yes Virginia, Collecting Ceramics Can Be Hip

Lynn Bryne remarked on her experience at the New York Ceramics & Glass Fair, “… there were several dealers that showcased work by contemporary artisans. By far, my favorite was the artists represented by…

PAUL SCOTT New American Scenery | Plate engraving with Paul Scott and Paul Holdway

October 13, 2021. Produced by The Bowes Museum. Ceramic artist Paul Scott tells us more about his collaboration with former SPODE engraver, Paul Holdway. Part of the New American Scenery Project.

View “Plate engraving with Paul Scott and Paul Holdway on Vimeo.

ARTIST TALK | MELTING POINT: RISING WATERS with Courtney M. Leonard, Paul Scott, and Norwood Viviano, moderated by Jami Powell

September 15, 2021. Ferrin Contemporary Curator Conversation featuring artists Courtney M. Leonard, Paul Scott, and Norwood Viviano. Moderated by Jami Powell, Ph.D., Curator of Indigenous Art, Hood Museum, Dartmouth University (Hanover, NH).

View “Artist Talk | MELTING POINT: Rising Waters” on Vimeo.

FOUNDERS? HOUR FEATURING Paul Scott with Leslie Ferrin & Brian Gallagher

June 11, 2021 | The Mint Museum?s Founders? Circle is pleased to present their first ever International Founders? Hour featuring UK-based artist, Paul Scott. From his studio in Cumbria, Scott creates contemporary versions of traditional blue and white transferware ceramics, updating this historic media for the 21st century. Scott?s work engages political and social issues that resonate with our lives today, questioning the cultural history of transferware ceramics in the dissemination of national ideas and settler-centric narratives.

View ?Founders? Hour featuring Paul Scott with Leslie Ferrin & Brian Gallagher? on Vimeo.

FERRIN CONTEMPORARY IN CONVERSATION: RAID THE ICEBOX NOW with Elizabeth Williams, Beth Katleman, and Paul Scott

June 7, 2021 | For the 50th anniversary of Andy Warhol’s Raid the Icebox exhibition, RISD Museum invited eight contemporary artists and collectives to mine the museum, taking inspiration from objects or incorporating objects into new installations that reconsider how collections can be reimagined.

View “Ferrin Contemporary in Conversation: Raid the Icebox Now with Elizabeth Williams, Beth Katleman, and Paul Scott” on Vimeo.

SELECT WORKS BY PAUL SCOTT AVAILABLE IN OUR ONLINE SHOP