Join us and get 10% OFF your first course

Arts and Crafts Movement US

Taught by David Rago

Watch the course trailer

Course Description

David Rago has appeared as an appraiser on the US Antiques Roadshow for 20 years and he is the author of six books on 20th century design.  He has dealt in Arts and Crafts for 44 years and together with his wife owns David Rago Auctions.

On this online course David paints a fascinating picture of The Arts and Crafts Movement and how this revolution has impacted collectible arts and crafts in the US. David pulls on numerous real world examples and brings the social and political context to bear on actual pieces, so you come to recognise the signature style of the movement and specific influential individuals.

David draws on his experience and his very personal perspective of the Movement, of living with objects in your own home that carried the spirit of creativity. He takes each of the three main ingredients of Arts and Crafts material step-by-step, namely mud, copper, and oak. With his infectious enthusiasm about the creative process David will share with you how the Arts and Crafts Movement changed these base materials, into golden objects and in some cases as you’ll see into their very weight in gold.

Whether you're an enthusiastic collector or a dealer David will teach you how to spot good arts and crafts items for collection or for resale.

Please feel free to ask him any questions as you go through the course – this is a unique opportunity to interact with a real world expert. Please remember though – valuations and assessments will not be done online as this is an online education service with world experts; not a valuation service.

Course outline

  • Arts & Crafts Moves to America

    In this first lesson David gives a fascinating perspective on the changes in society just after the Industrial Revolution and how this societal change had a very direct impact on craftsmanship. A whistle-stop tour through it’s British origins (see Tony Geering’s course for more in-depth study on the British roots of the Movement) before crossing the pond and seeing how seeds of the Arts and Crafts Movement branched out in America, and indeed how it evolved from state to state.
  • Decorative Ceramics

    David will take you on a regional tour, stopping to focus on leading potters and the progression from east to west as the movement matured. With over 200 artists producing art pottery during this period, David pulls on a wealth of examples, showing numerous pieces and you will become confident with the individual traits of some of the leading potters of their time. From the works of William Grueby that looks as much grown as it does potted; the animal designs of the Saturday Evening Girls; to the folk art influence of William Walley; or George Ohr, arguably the most important potter to come out of America at the turn of the century; and many, many more pioneering artists during this time.
  • Wrought Metal

    From ceramics to wrought metal. In many ways the path that wrought metal took in America mirrors the path that decorative ceramics took moving from east to west. In this lesson David will deep dive into 3 particularly influential schools the New York School, Chicago School and the Bay Area California School with a focus on certain companies within; Gustav Stickley, Roycroft, Kalo, Dirk Van Erk amongst others
  • Furniture

    The fourth and final installment focuses on furniture. David explores four furniture producers, their style and impact on the movement: the visionary Gustav Stickley; his brother and competitor L and JG Stickley; the Roycrofters and the Limbert Furniture Company. David brings these influential figures and their work to life, a unique opportunity to learn from the perspective of a true professional who has probably handled as much work from this period as anyone has. Finally David brings this all of these elements, mud, copper and oak, to look at the totality of the Arts and Crafts Movement – how these elements were meant to be integrated so that these objects have a unified impact on the home.

Choose how you want to learn

  • The Expert option


    Develop your learning further with marked assignments and personal tuition from David Rago

    • Start course whenever you like
    • 4 weeks tutor access for personalised assignment feedback & coaching
    • 4 assignments marked by David Rago
    • Certificate of completion from David Rago
    • Online classroom with up to 20 classmates
    • 4 lessons with expert videos & notes
    • Group chat & direct message with tutor & classmates
    • Lifetime access to videos, notes & classroom
    Learn more
  • The Peer option

    Discover the benefits of group learning in an online interactive classroom of no more than 20 people. Get the most from shared knowledge and community study

    • Start course whenever you like
    • Practise what you learn with your peers
    • Online classroom with up to 20 classmates
    • 4 lessons with expert videos & notes
    • 4 course assignments
    • Group chat & direct message classmates
    • Lifetime access to videos, notes & classroom
    Learn more

Learn better together

  • Online classroom

    Start anytime and join a class of no more than 20 students

    Start anytime and join a class of no more than 20 students
  • Test yourself

    Practice what you learn with assignments after each lesson

    Practice what you learn with assignments after each lesson
  • Personal tuition

    Exclusive assignment feedback from Expert Tutors

    Exclusive assignment feedback from Expert Tutors
  • Share

    Share ideas with classmates from around the world

    Share ideas with classmates from around the world

Meet David Rago

David Rago began a life long passion for American decorative ceramics at the age of sixteen, at a flea market in his home state of New Jersey. Today, with partners Suzanne Perrault and Miriam Tucker, he oversees the auction house that bears his name, selling privately in the field of 20th/21st C. Design. He lectures nationally and also appears as an expert appraiser for the PBS series, Antiques Roadshow, where he specializes in decorative ceramics and porcelain.

Rago is an animated teacher and a natural story teller.

Our community loves us

Proud to work with...