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Ceramics exhibition brings ‘father of British studio pottery’ to the North York Moors

Ceramics - Objects Born Not Made ExhibitionCeramics - Objects Born Not Made Exhibition

11 May 2022

It’s more than a century since the famous Leach Pottery in St Ives, Cornwall, was founded, but the legacy of Japanese-born Bernard Leach can still be seen in the tableware of today. Everyone will have seen and probably used an item inspired by his work. The simple, earthy-toned pieces will feel familiar to many, representing a unique fusion of Western and Eastern styles that dominated the studio pottery world for much of the 20th century.

Bernard Howell Leach by Ida Kar - copyright National Portrait Gallery London

‘Objects born, not made’ opens at the Inspired by… gallery at Danby Lodge National Park Centre on Saturday 28 May until Sunday 10 July. Alongside items by Bernard Leach himself, works from a selection of studio potters will be on display, each uniquely influenced by Leach’s work.

Sally Ann Smith, curator of the Inspired by… gallery said:

“It’s very exciting to have such a high-calibre exhibition coming to the North York Moors. Pottery has seen a great revival in recent years, so it seems only right we take this time to acknowledge one of its great influencers.”

“The impact that Bernard Leach had on studio pottery in this country and indeed across the world is difficult to quantify. He was vehemently opposed to industrial ‘mass-produced’ pottery, instead producing beautiful, handmade objects that were still designed for practical use.

“Perhaps most importantly, many of the pupils and apprentices taught by Leach went on to become very successful potters in their own right, and in turn taught hundreds of others. This legacy - the Leach tradition of functional pottery and East meets West – still lives on in the works of today.”

Abu Karo, earthenware bowl, inspired by Bernard Leach

On display at the same time is ‘Fired Earth’, showcasing clay works that take inspiration from the natural world. Artists Michelle Freemantle, Andrew Pentland, Patricia Thom, David Wright and Daisy Fawcett each produce hand-thrown, functional pieces that are uniquely influenced by their own experiences. For more information, please visit


Media contact

Nina Beadle

Communications Officer, North York Moors National Park Authority

01439 772700

The North York Moors National Park

The North York Moors is a beautiful landscape of stunning moorland, ancient woodland and historic sites. Created on 28 November 1952 it became Britain’s sixth national park. Covering an area of 554 square miles (1,436 square kilometres) the National Park has 26 miles of coastline, two national nature reserves, 840 Scheduled Monuments and over 3,000 listed buildings, attracting an estimated 8.4 million visitors a year.

The National Park has two visitor centres, Danby Lodge National Park Centre, Danby and Sutton Bank National Park Centre, providing opportunities for cycling, walking, eating, picnicking, shopping, crafts and wildlife-watching. The centre in Danby also houses the Inspired by… gallery, which features regularly changing exhibitions by artists who draw their inspiration from the North York Moors.

The North York Moors National Park Authority works with a wide variety of people to care for this beautiful corner of Yorkshire, providing apprenticeships and volunteering opportunities with nearly 14% of staff being apprentices from local families.

To view other press releases and for further information about the North York Moors National Park, visit