Author(s): Anthony Morris
Ant Morris is, and always has been, an artist. He's also a potter - a mud and water man, fascinated by colour and form. From the rough clay of Matakana, north of Auckland, Ant Morris and his then wife and business partner, Sue James, created one of this country's leading potteries. From terracotta flooring tiles to huge clay pots, a piece by Morris & James quickly became a status symbol in its own right, a superb and highly desirable piece of art - distinctive, stylish and utterly ours. Through the heady days of the 1980s, Morris & James rode the wave of a booming economy and a rampant consumer culture, only to face ruin when death, fire and financial reality arrived and the world woke up with a hangover. Throughout it all, Morris & James survived - sometimes by the skin of its teeth - as the inevitable clash of artistic vision and commercial reality impacted heavily on everyone involved with the little family business that grew, sometimes painfully. This fascinating insight into the man and the company he built, literally from the ground up, shows how both were forced to change, yet never lost their place in the affections of those who love the vision and the glorious sense of colour which characterized everything stamped with their distinctive pennyfarthing brand. Superbly illustrated with stunning images, this is a book to love and a gift to treasure, just like a piece of Morris & James.
Anthony Morris is the founder of highly successful pottery business, Morris & James. He has since retired and sold the business, but still lives on site at Matakana. Nick Charlton is Design Director for Morris and James, and is a Senior Lecturer in Product Design at Auckland University of Technology, with extensive experience in the crafts, small business and design management. Barbara Reardon has been a friend and colleague of Anthony Morris for 17 years, much of that time as a director of Morris & James and trustee of Anthony's family trust. She works as a psychotherapist in Albany, Auckland.