“Hear Me Now: The Black Potters of Old Edgefield, South Carolina,” an exhibition at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, examines ceramic vessels made by enslaved Black potters in 19th-century South Carolina. The artisans responsible for crafting the displayed jugs and jars—whose sale typically benefited factory investors and owners—remain largely anonymous.Continue Reading

Paraphrasing psychologist G. Stanley Hall, Allen Eaton—author, curator, and staunch advocate of the early 20th-century Craft Revival—remarked that, with handicrafts, “we rehearse the activity of our ancestry.” This image of making as playacting, or as a form of discovery, also captures how craft often works to canonize tradition even asContinue Reading