Dame Lucie Rie DBE (1902 – 1995) was an Austrian-born studio potter who lived and worked in London. She studied at the Kunstgewerbeschule in Vienna under Michael Powolny from 1922 to 1926. She started her first studio in Vienna in 1925. In 1937 she won a silver medal at the Paris International Exhibition, the same show in which Pablo Picasso exhibited Guernica.
She fled Nazi Austria in 1938 and moved to London, where she started a studio in Hyde Park in a converted stable, making ceramic buttons and jewelry. That studio has since been reconstructed into the Victoria and Albert Museum’s ceramics gallery. She hired Hans Coper in 1946 and, upon learning that he was interested in sculpture, she sent Coper to Heber Mathews, who taught Coper how to make pots on a wheel. Her own work is known for its bright colors, and their delicate and modernist designs. She was honored with a CBE in 1981 and a DBE in 1991.
T Magazine with the New York Times recently published a gallery of paintings of Rie’s pottery by Leanne Shapton. Shapton is an author and illustrator in New York City. She’s the co-founder of J&L Books. Her paintings of Rie’s work come from the book Lucie Rie: A Survey of Her Life and Work.
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