Museum of Ceramics publishes children’s book | News, Sports, Jobs

Submitted photo Susan Weaver, left, and Catherine Keenan, center, present a copy of “Clay: Homer and Shakespeare Introduces Pottery” to Fiesta Tableware Company President Liz McIlvain.

EAST LIVERPOOL — The Museum of Ceramics Foundation has published a children’s book written by Catherine Keenan. “Clay: Homer and Shakespeare Introduce Pottery” is a repetitive poem with hand movements. It tells the story of how clay is transformed into pottery using the Laughlin Brothers Pottery as a setting. The book is illustrated with oil paintings from the museum’s collection. The paintings, by Roland Schweinsburg (1898 – 1963), were commissioned by the chamber of commerce to show the work in pottery. Schweinsburg was a Youngstown and area artist who also painted the TRAP mural “Old Bennett Pottery” in the Ceramics Museum when it was a post office. The museum displays 18 of his paintings and has another 12 paintings that were created as subjects for oil painting.

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The book is only available in the Museum gift shop. Although the museum is closed for the winter months, books can still be purchased by calling the museum and leaving a message. An employee will return calls and make arrangements, including pickup or delivery. Available soft or hard, and signed if desired.

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A grant from the Ohio Humanities Council helped fund the printing costs (Fulton Books) and will also provide a free copy to all fourth graders visiting the museum as a class group this year. Teachers can schedule guided tours by calling the museum at 330-386-6001 and leaving a message or by emailing [email protected]

Keenan wrote the poem as part of a graduate-level course he was taking several years ago. Museum Director Susan Weaver said, “When I was director of the MoC, Cathi came and told me she had written a children’s book that included pictures of Schweinsburg. I was very interested and finally one day she brought a worn copy for me to read. Despite its appearance, I was very impressed! I knew this was a real gem and a great way to educating children and adults about pottery making, historical pottery, and even art! I knew we had to publish it to share with our community.” He added, “The illustrations in this book are stunning and make it a worthwhile purchase for all age levels.”

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Museum staff Wendy Adkins, Jennifer Barrett Weaver all contributed to the editing and design of the publication.

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