The American studio potter Edith Heath, chic and stylish but valuing simplicity, was an icon of American design. Heath was born in 1911 to immigrant parents in Iowa. As a young woman she worked as an art teacher, but soon enough she converted a sewing machine into a pottery wheel (clever!) and began experimenting with clay. By 1948, Heath had launched her own company, Heath Ceramics, and by 1949 she was selling 100,000 pieces a year. Eventually, her Coupe, Rim, and Plaza lines redefined tableware around the world. At the Oakland Museum, photographs, objects and, of course, pottery tell the story of Heath’s extraordinary life. —E.C.
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