The Mad Potter by Jan Greenberg

The Mad Potter

When George Ohr's trove of pottery was discovered in 1967, years after his death, his true genius was discovered with it. The world could finally see how unique this artist really was!Born in 1856 in Biloxi, Mississippi, George grew up to the sounds of the civil war and political unrest.When he was 22, his boyhood friend introduced him to the pottery wheel. The lost young man suddenly found his calling."When I found the potter's wheel I felt it a...

Details The Mad Potter

TitleThe Mad Potter
Release DateOct 29th, 2013
PublisherRoaring Brook Press
GenreBiography, Nonfiction, Art, Childrens, Picture Books, Juvenile, Middle Grade, History

Reviews The Mad Potter

  • Joan
    This is a biography of another artist I never heard of. That seems to be a theme of this year's award winners and honors. What makes this book are the photographs of Ohr's pottery. His pottery is art, not really useful stuff, or only incidentally useful. He never really made any money from the artwork but did manage a living from his more mundane creations. He told his children not to try to sell the artwork for at least 50 + years which was a pr...
  • Stephanie Tournas
    I had never heard of George Ohr, but that did not stop me from thoroughly enjoying this picture book biography of him. He was an "eccentric genius" potter from Biloxi, Mississippi, whose art was years ahead of his time. Eccentric in art, business and behavior, he never quite fit in to his generation at the turn of the 20th century. But, after crates of his pots, urns, pitchers and teapots were discovered in 1968, his work started to sell for pric...
  • Kathryn Moody
    The photographs of Ohr's pottery were beautiful and unusual. The photographs of Ohr and his workshop and family were also very interesting. I was not thrilled with the writing and found the biographical narrative difficult to become involved and engaged with. Though I love stories of unusual characters, especially those unappreciated by their time or place, I did not feel compelled to this particular story. It was, however, very informative. Perh...
  • Betsy
    One Sentence Review: More fun than you'd expect (though the mustache on the cover almost gives it away) this bio of an obscure but ahead-of-his-time potter is admittedly not the usual children's fare, yet almost because of that fact it ends up being one of the best nonfiction works out there for the 9-12 year-old set.
  • Edward Sullivan
    A fascinating, completely engaging introduction to a delightfully eccentric, innovative artist.
  • Suzanne Dix
    What a genius! Facing constant criticism and professional disappointment, George Ohr had a vision that would not be appreciated until long after his death. I am inspired by his courage and perseverance!
  • Erica
    I originally gave this book only 3 stars, but I re-read it, after several months (now it's May, 2014), and I'm starting to see it differently. (I had written; Weirdly amazing pots, interesting topic - but the presentation sapped the wonderfulness out of it for me. I wanted more photos, and larger, and more dramatic, captivating story.) I first thought it would only appeal to eccentric, artistic, or art-collector adults, especially ones who want t...
  • Natalie Payton
    Summary/Critique:The Mad Potter: George E. Ohr, Eccentric Genius by Jan Greenberg is a nonfiction book about George Ohr and the discovery of his pottery after his death. George Ohr was born in the mid-1800s and grew up during the civil war. He was introduced to pottery and found his calling. He created pots, vases, and sculptures that expressed his eccentricity and unique personality. He took his collection to art shows, museums, and fairs but no...
  • Brooke Snyder
    Summary: George Ohr was a very creative man who fell in love with pottery. His pottery was different than most and quite unique. He took is pottery to art shows, but nobody bought his art work because they thought it was odd. George hid his pottery all over, hoping it would be discovered one day and it was! His pottery was discovered after his death. Today, we see how creative George really was.Personal Response/Critical Response: I’m not a big...
  • Devan
    Summary:The Mad Potter was a biography of potter George E. Ohr. If followed his life and his development as a Potter. All his ups and downs in business where shown, and his family life was talked about as well. There are many examples of his work through the story with pictures and descriptions.Critique:The story does have a lot great information, but there was too much. The book is designated as a children's book, but at 19 years old, the story ...
  • Maria Burnham
    I read this book because I have been following the books that my local Chapter and Verse book club are discussing. For the month of February, we were set to discuss our favorite award winning books. In attempt to branch out from what I normally read, I picked up and started to read all of the award winning elementary level books. This book, in particular, stood out to me as an interesting non-fiction read. I've always been a person who loves art ...
  • Suzanne
    A couple of years ago a friend of mine produced a Nebraska EducationalTelecommunications video (NET): EMERY BLAGDON AND HIS HEALING MACHINE. This book, The Mad Potter: George E. Oer Eccentric Genius, reminds me of this video. This biography tells the story of George E. Ohr. Blacksmith turned potter. Ohr was not famous during his lifetime, but today his pottery, if it can be found, sells for eighty-four thousand to over a hundred thousand-- for on...
  • Jim Erekson
    Alternating between primary source photos and art photos of Ohr's pottery made this an engaging visual experience. The story of the crazy artist being ahead of his time is typical, but still fun to read. And this version put an American twist on it (not the Van Gogh-ish European story we're so used to). If you ask me, Ohr's biggest marketing mistake was putting too much stuff on display--the display was the spectacle people came to see, and when ...
  • M.
    George Ohr may well have been a genius as a potter, but I don't think I would have liked the man. He carried his eccentricities and egoism to an extreme, probably to try to sell his pottery to people wanting to see the Mad Potter of Biloxi. I came away with the impression that his antics worked to the detriment of his wife and family in many cases. On the other hand, Ohr had a control over his medium and an inspiration that foresaw much of the mo...
  • Kelly
    Photographic endpapers begin the journey inside the life of the eccentric potter from post Civil War times. His Pot-Ohr-E was located in Biloxi, Mississippi and stuffed with a few practical items, but mostly art pottery of varying styles with ruffles, flutes, puzzles, and unique glazing. He had apprenticed, but was mostly self-taught and full of pride. His values mirrored the Arts and Crafts movement of the time. His pottery did not sell well unt...
  • Barbara
    Filled with period photographs of the man and his times as well as shots of the unique pottery he created, this book focuses on George Ohr, a Biloxi potter known for his self-promotion and eccentricity. The pottery itself is lovely, original, and in many cases, covered in stunningly lovely glazes. The man himself is quite intriguing too since his artwork brought him little attention during his lifetime--he lived from 1857 until 1918--but years af...
  • Reshamad
    George E Ohr was a 19th century American potter. He was largely unknown until years after his death, in 1967, a treasure trove of his work was discovered. “The Mad Potter” is a chapter book, picture book, biography.This picture book non-fiction is a wonderful account of his life and work. Through photographs of George and photos of his pottery, this book showcases his genius. The authors present this fascinating biography of Geroge Ohr throug...
  • Elissa Schaeffer
    George was the duck in his family of chickens, or so he says (more or less), the odd man out. He finally found his passion at age 22 when he discovered the pottery wheel. He made "usable objects" that he sold to local homeowners, but he preferred making works of art. Unfortunately, no one else saw them that way.An original showman and very enthusiastic about his talent George Ohr used every method he could to sell his brand and his wares, but his...
  • Anne
    I was drawn to this book because of George Ohr’s wild and funny-looking mustache pictured on the front cover is one that grabbed my attention and the title The Mad Potter. Who was George Ohr? The book claims he was “The original do-it-yourselfer”. Ohr was an independent and imaginative American ceramic artist. Looking at his pieces, it is fun to think of what may or may not have inspired many of them. I wish I had one of his crazy and beaut...
  • Arminzerella
    George E. Ohr was an outrageous potter from Biloxi, Mississippi with a huge personality (and a huge curling mustache) whose pottery and artistic vision were ahead of his time. While he was more notorious than famous in his own lifetime, when his pottery was "rediscovered" in the late 1960s, it became much sought-after by the collectors Ohr had hoped to attract in the early 1900s. This juvenile biography tells George's story as he struggled to fin...
  • Brady Stevens
    This was probably one of favorite books if not my favorite. I am really into pottery and seeing all the abstract and irregular designs of his creations is really engaging. The books is about George E. Ohr, he was an unusual man himself along with his pottery. The pictures show all the features that each individual piece had and I really love it cause it acts as a guideline where I can pick up ideas for my own creations that I throw. this is a gre...
  • Peg
    Brief, well written introduction to George Ohr, a late 19th- early 20th century potter. Greenberg writes about his skill, possible genius, and eccentricities in a way that will keep youngsters reading. Art is in the eye of the beholder and while George knew what he made was art, the general or ever artsy population didn't recognize it until the late 1960s. Greenberg makes clear the financial and artistic struggles faced by Ohr, but she also makes...
  • Tamsyn
    This was a fun and interesting book to learn about the artist-ahead-of-his-time, George E. Ohr. One of those artists whose art is not appreciated in the time of its making (1881-1910), he boxed it all up in 1910 and instructed his children not to sell it for 50 years. He was a true eccentric with a big personality and sense of humor, which came out in his art and other areas of his life -- naming many of his children with first names that represe...
  • Syndi Flores
    Compared to other books, this has a bit more text and more information to gather. This story has chapters that helps to break down the story about George E. Ohr. As well as the text tells the reader the facts, the images in the story also help to tell what is going on. Also, the images in this story are real pictures, not drawn. Most of the pictures are about some of his work and some are about places each helps the story move along. This book is...
  • Jenny
    Received a Sibert Honor this year (award given for informational children's books). I had never heard of George Ohr before, but he definitely had talent. He was a talented potter, but really wasn't discovered or honored until after his death (that seems to be common for many artists). I enjoyed the photographs of him, his family, and his pottery as well as the information about his life. (I do think his names for his children were a bit too odd.....
  • Mrs. Trimble
    George Ohr was an amazing artist. He was a visionary not afraid to march to the beat of his own drum. Even though his artwork lived way before it's time, his work is revered and highly-sought-after today. How amazing it must have been for Jim Carpenter to stumble upon the amazing treasure trove of pottery in 1968. Being the daughter of an antique-dealing family for over 45 years, I know this was a heart-stopping, adrenaline-rushing, life-changing...
  • Kifflie
    Jan Greenberg and Sandra Jordan have a real knack for getting inside the heads of eccentric artists. George E. Ohr was a mad, creative genius who clearly was born in the wrong century. His wild, unique pottery designs were too much for folks at the turn of the last century but look pretty cool now. There are plenty of photos of the pots, as well as of the artist himself, who was certainly no shrinking violet by any means. And it's only fitting th...