An Industrial Craft Reinstated: A Printmaker's Perspective on Tissue Transferware
Printed images and text on glazed ceramic
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reflective practice
tissue transferware

How to Cite

Sheppy, L. (2023). An Industrial Craft Reinstated: A Printmaker’s Perspective on Tissue Transferware. IMPACT Printmaking Journal, 1.


Tissue transferware is a genre of industrial printmaking on ceramics. This genre was practiced inside the factory and is described in my doctoral study as an industrial craft. A majority of the craft knowledge has been lost as the pottery industries have closed or have replaced printing on ceramics with newer and more cost effective forms of decoration.  

In this reflective paper I present the aim of my study; to unravel and interpret the industrial craft knowledge so tissue transferware will become reinstated through the lens of contemporary printmaking. Responding as both a researcher and artist this study exposed knowledge of the process highlighting a walk-through demonstration of how it works technically using 21st century methods. In this I have established the potential for future artists working with this particular form of printmaking and ceramic process, so that it will become part of creative practice in the future. 

Oral histories, archival research and ethnographic perspectives documenting lived accounts from ex-pottery and printmaking professionals with specialist knowledge supported this investigation and enabled it to progress. Material making and reflection-in-action resulted in emergent knowledge linking traditional, autographic and manual material practices with the digital and mechanical; fusing printmaking and ceramics methods of production. 

The new method does not replace the original industrial craft but serves as a contemporary interpretation of it. The research has been materialised through a series of art works, produced with a palette of tools and materials familiar to artists working in the fields of printmaking and ceramics. This new method is open, accessible and within reach of future artists to realise its creative potential.
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This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.

Copyright (c) 2023 Lisa Sheppy


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