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Masters: Polymer Clay: Major Works by Leading Artists Paperback – March 1, 2011

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  • Masters: Polymer Clay: Major Works by Leading Artists
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Editorial Reviews


"Stunning! This book is an example of why the printed book should never go away. From cover to cover it is packed with amazing professional photos showcasing the work of world-renowned polymer clay artists. As someone who has worked in polymer clay for several years, I can appreciate the talent and hard work that goes into these incredibly detailed pieces of art, and this book brings it all to you. With just enough of (each) artist’s biography and bold beautiful colors of their pieces, this book is worth the price even if you have never worked with polymer clay." - Angeli Mangi, Chicago Metal Arts Guild blog, March 2012

About the Author

Curator Rachel Carren is one of the world's best-known polymer specialists. Her art is in the permanent collections of several American museums.

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Product Details

  • Series: Masters
  • Paperback: 330 pages
  • Publisher: Lark Crafts; 1st edition (March 1, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1600595847
  • ISBN-13: 978-1600595844
  • Product Dimensions: 1 x 9 x 8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2.3 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (44 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #616,308 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Ray Hemachandra is the Publishers Weekly 2012 Best Books-winning author of Showcase 500 Beaded Jewelry, which was also an Amazon Best Book of the Month in March 2013 and April 2013. He has served as team lead, business manager, and social media and marketing director for Lark Jewelry & Beading, a sub-imprint of Lark Books; a mind/body/spirit writer, interviewer, and blogger; a book, magazine, and newspaper editor; and an activist, advocate, and family trainer in the autism community. Originally from New York, he lives with his son in Asheville, North Carolina.

Connect with him on his website, his Pinterest boards at, or on Facebook at

Ray has interviewed and written many articles about teachers and authors in the mind/body/spirit category, including Eckhart Tolle, Dr. Wayne W. Dyer, Louise Hay, Marianne Williamson, Byron Katie, Doreen Virtue, Sakyong Mipham, and Masaru Emoto, as well as many leading retailers, musicians, jewelers, beaders, quilters, and other artists.

His books as author or senior editor for Lark include The Penland Book of Glass; Beading with World Beads; Masters: Beadweaving and other Masters Series books, including Masters: Gold, Masters: Blown Glass, Masters: Polymer Clay, Masters: Earthenware, and Masters: Art Quilts, Volumes 1 and 2; and numerous books in the 500 Series, including Showcase 500 Beaded Jewelry, Showcase 500 Art Necklaces, 500 Judaica, 500 Art Quilts, 500 Vases, 500 Raku, and three furniture books in the series devoted to chairs, tables, and cabinets.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

32 of 35 people found the following review helpful By whim on March 4, 2011
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
WOW! If you ever doubted polymer clay is a true art form then you have got to see this book! The projects are absolutely beautiful and very well photographed! It's amazing what can be acheived with polyemer clay in the hands of a master artist. This book features the creations of 42 artists. It is a huge book (330 pages) containing hundreds of projects. It includes jewelry, vessels and sculptures. I've dabbled in polymer clay on and off over the years with just so-so results. This book has inspired me to get out my polymer clay again and start creating. Keep in mind this book does not contain instructions for working with polymer clay. It is a picture book of some truly amazing pieces of art created with polymer clay. Very inspiring! Eye candy!

I would highly recommend this book to any polymer clay artist or to anyone who just apprecitates good art.
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18 of 19 people found the following review helpful By Margaret Bonham on March 5, 2011
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This book is just delicious! I've worked extensively in polymer clay for over a decade and was very aware of the level of art that was capable with this medium. But this book still BLEW me away. There were even a few artists whose work I had never seen.Rachel Carren did a fabulous job as curator. There will never be the question again about whether polymer clay is a fine art medium. This book and these artists prove it is so.
This book is a great history of the medium in pictures for those who already love this wonderful medium. For those just becoming interested in it as a hobby or profession, it will certainly provide more than enough inspiration. I know I will keep this book close by just to savor each picture piece by piece.
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10 of 10 people found the following review helpful By Andrea L. Anastos on December 21, 2011
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
If you work with polymer clay, you want this book.
If you want to become a clay artist, you NEED this book.
It is worth every penny. The illustrations are inspiring regardless of your medium and, unlike many books of this type, the curator has not limited herself to the most recent work, but has chosen to include almost 20 years (1992 - 2009) of polymer art...and, therefore, the work of two or three generations of artists.
The work varies widely: from jewelry to structural pieces to sculpture. It also varies greatly in size from items as small as 2" x 2" to Sonny King's 35" x 15" dioramas. The artists have been inspired by Africa, Edward Hopper, fossils, high fashion, Japanese brush painting, mosaic, robotics, and myth.
And, if there was any doubt remaining, this book makes it absolutely indisputable: polymer clay is a medium of "true art" as much as oil or watercolor or marble.
Caveat: This is not a how-to book. It is a luxurious reference piece, intended to charm, encourage, amaze, inspire, and delight. It belongs on the shelf of any craftsperson in any field.
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14 of 16 people found the following review helpful By becksnyc on June 17, 2011
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase'll get it, but you'll also take a ride on the polymer history train.

The blurb on the back cover that says, "This..survey presents innovative polymer clay works from forty of the leading artist working TODAY..." However, the book presents several artists I'm sure no longer work actively in polymer (Pier Voulkos, Shellie Brooks). And many of the photos from the following artists were more than 10 years old! (Jamey D Allen, Jo Ellen Trilling, Gwen Gibson, Barbara Sperling, Diane Falkenhagen, Rebecca Mazur, the Groves ).

Although the book was an inspiring catalog, it was only partly "current." For this reason (only), I was disappointed. Since there are online resources devoted to polymer history, ( & most of these gifted artists' work have been published elsewhere, I'd seen many of the photos already.

Polymer craft is replete with innovative artists working today, many building on the shoulders of giants. I would have preferred seeing fresh, unpublished work, rather than reviewing the polymer past.

That said, for any serious polymer artist, this catalog of work is a must have & will serve as an inspiration.
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10 of 12 people found the following review helpful By D. Lutz on March 31, 2011
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The book has the 2nd most stunning art that I've seen in my travels (second to peter lik). I find myself going through it over and over thinking there is no way that's made of polymer clay. Then I read the description and it say polymer clay. I still can't believe how great they are.

The photographers also need credit for perfect shots.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Razine Wenneker on April 24, 2012
Format: Paperback
"Masters" Polymer Clay is a master in and of itself. The artists and their creations featured in this book demonstrate a wonderful appreciation and knowledge of this medium. I have never viewed such a remarkable display of use of polymer clay. Many of the pieces undulate with both movement and color. I marved at the many different patterned pieces produced.

I own a polymer clay butterfly broach created by Steven Ford. He has done many collaborative pieces with David Forlano, whose work is featured on pages 88/95 of this exciting book "Masters." My own classroom experience with Steven Ford was inspiring. By the end of the sessions, we had a greater appreciation of this material and its potential. But, we had a long way to go before we had "mastered" this art form.

Several of the artists featured in this book have demonstrated their intrinsic ability to combine their metal, textile, and painting experience to create bracelets, necklaces, and pendants. Mary Filapek and Lou Ann Townsend are representative of these kind of artists.

Chris Malone's figurative sculptures are examples of detailed tribal figures. Polymer clay is utilized for the faces and hands. Their human-like features captures many different expressions. His creations are adorned with a myriad of materials such as fabric, rafia, metal, beads. etc.

Some of the artists have drawn on examples of nature. Others have looked forward to what might be. There are wonderful playful pieces such as those displayed by Rebecca Mazur. Flashy patterns created with brilliantly colored clay are exhibited on many of the structures featured in this book.

In essence, everything is here from A to Z. The alphabet of wonderful polymer clay work is presented in "Masters." In this book one can view all of the complexities of this material, with both its two and three dimensional attributes.
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