Born in Vienna at the turn of the last century, renowned potter Dame Lucie Rie escaped both the Nazi regime and her husband when she emigrated to Britain in 1938. In London she established a new studio in Albion Mews, where she continued to work well into her 80s until a series of strokes finally stilled her hand.
Over the course of her first decade as an up-and-coming potter in Austria, Rie received many awards and much encouragement. Her early years in London, however, were a struggle. The hardships of war were a large part of the reason, but also Rie found little interest for her work among the prevailing pottery elite (prominent among them, Bernard Leach). Ries work was not in line with the accepted aesthetics of the time and place. Her work was individual: delicate, flowing and deeply feminine. To this day, her pottery remains visually stunning and in no way outmoded, its lines and clarity still fresh and true.
The focus of this interesting exhibit is not only Ries work (the AGGV holds 19 of her pots in its permanent collection), but, as curator Toby Lawrence points out, the impact she had on her contemporaries and subsequent generations.