This research will examine the role of the copper-plate engraver in the transfer-printed ceramic industry, notably the process of image selection, use and modification. The literature on transfer-printed pottery is largely orientated to the collector and researched by collectors and dealers. Investigations have mainly dealt with factory identification, date, pattern derivation and evaluation of merit and value. My theoretical approach is one of scientific connoisseurship, material culture studies and new art history that includes the social and cultural context. Ultimately, the research will provide justification for saving and preserving the Spode copper plate archive.
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