In the early 80's, I frequented a shop that specialized in 20th Century things. One day the owner sees someone coming in the door and says, "Tim, you gotta meet this man." I was interested in art pottery- this is before I ever touched clay- and the man I met, Ed Henderson (pictured below) was a SERIOUS pottery collector. It didn't take long to know we were cut from the same cloth. So I immediately went to Ed's place for show and tell.
At that time, if I spent 100 on a pot it was a lot. I went to Ed's house and it is full of pottery. Newcomb, Ohr, Rookwood, Grueby, Roseville, Weller, you name it. Obviously, he was "well off." But it wasn't just the quality that was startling. It was also the quanity. He was a voracious- and very astute- buyer. He was also an antique dealer for 25 year and had an innate sense of what to buy. We became friends and I met a number of his friends that were also art collectors- with an emphasis on pottery.

In 1993, I tried my hand at making pots. I don't know why. I was painting pictures at the time. But right off the bat, I had great success making pots. And since I had been collecting art pottery for 15 years, I naturally started making pots in that tradition.

I think it was '92, maybe 91, when the Glover (?) Collection of Rookwood went up to auction at Cincinnati Art Galleries and shook the art pottery world up. Now Ed, if I remember correctly, had hundreds of pieces of Rookwood. And being the dealer he is, he unloaded all of it and powered the Rookwood II auction. The catalog had a dedication to Ed in the front.

All of this happens just when I start making pots. After Ed unloads, I ask him, "Well Ed, what are you gonna buy now?" His answer. "Your pots, Tim" Needless to say it was stunning to receive his endorsment and support. He bought my pots from the gitgo. The first time I had a little show at the community college about three semesters into my ceramic life, he bought 8 pieces. And other of his friends bought as well. So over the course of six or seven years, Ed would come by and buy a couple pots anytime I had something exciting come out of the kiln. He ended up with 50 pieces. They are pictured below. If you click on the picture, you can blow it up and get a detailed look at the pots. It's a minute and a half download for a dail-up, but it's worth it! Please keep in mind though, that the only pots for sale are on the "new pots page."

So, how did I end up with them? Ed is 82, ill, and dealing with end-of-life issues. And since he has a dealers frame of mind, he is unloading a number of his collections. I propositioned him about my pots and he said, "OK."

I am tickled to get these pots back for a number of reasons. First, he had a number of my very best pieces. Second, he had a chronological sampling of my pots. Third, I am short on pots this year. I don't know why, but I am spending more time than ever at making pots but I also have fewer pots than ever for my effort. I am doing a lot of experimenting and trying to produce the best pots possible. I guess that is the problem and I hope it will soon sort itself out.

Anyway, I now have a number of older pieces and I am going to keep some and sell some. Hopefully, anyone that collects my pots and has a sense of history will find this all of interest. These pots- through the years- tell a tale. At least for me they do. What about you?