Influenced by both archaeology and geology her work reflects the effect of time on materials, as seen in the processes that shape our landscape and the marks left behind by the people and other life forms that live and have lived within it.
Tessa Wolfe Murray developed her smoke firing technique as a result of determined necessity coupled with a fascination with fire. The traditional method of burying a low or unfired pot in sawdust underground or in a container and leaving it to burn slowly for between 8 and 24 hours did not suit the pots she wanted to make.
Jane Cox trained at Camberwell College of Art (1988-1992) and at the Royal College of Art (1992-1994), and has won several awards for her work including the Wedgwood Scholarship for surface design. Her work is collected for its use of rich jewel like glazes and stylish elegant forms.
Uses a variety of coloured and textured clays to create distinctive coiled pots which take their forms and surfaces from nature, with particular inspiration coming from beach stones and geological strata. By combining clays and layering slips, using a range of techniques, he is able to create dramatic effects without the use of glazes.
His designs are developed on the North Wales coast where he spends a quarter of his working year recording in a variety of media the textures, shapes, colour and structure of the coastal landscape. This rich source of inspiration has a simple quiet affinity with the clay and processes that he uses.
Each animal is individually made by the process of slab building in clay, i.e. rolling out a sheet of clay and forming the body, then gradually adding slab by slab to form the whole animal. The details are then remodelled until the animal is complete. It is then biscuit fired, glazed and refired to stoneware temperature.
Mike Goddard showed us his masterly throwing accompanied by his partner Margaret who not only showed us her gorgeous sgraffito decoration but allowed us to try it ourselves. Splitting his time between Becque, Kent and the Dordogne he takes influences from all three to produce his unique vessels.
Peter showed us how to take photographs of our work (useful for our new website and facebook pages).
Peter Searight is a Fine Art Fellow of the British Institute of Professional Photography and a widely exhibited award winning photographer.
Mark starts his sculptural work by making plaster moulds from found objects, hand-modelled shapes and lathe-turned shapes. He slipcast them into white earthenware clay components which he joins when leather-hard, then decorates with sliptrailed, stencilled and brushed slips. After the initial bisque firing he glazes with a combination of underglazes and earthenware glazes. Finally he applies metallic lustres and liquid bright gold and platinum.
His bowls mugs and platters are decorated with black slip on white slipcast earthenware using paper resist and masterly sliptrailing.
Jon showed us his techniques for constructing his animal sculptures. Starting with the undercarriage of a pig and the supports he uses. He went on to construct a plinth before giving us the opportunity of making a chicken’s head with eyes. He then demonstrated his decorating methods and gave us many tips and recipes. A really good day
Barbara works with a grogged porcelain, using Nerikomi techniques. This involves adding oxides or stains to the clay to colour it and then joining, slicing and rejoining layers of colours to build up patterns through the clay. She then slab builds the pieces. Biscuit firing to 1046o the pieces are re-sanded and then decorated using various resists. They are then smoke-fired and polished.
2020 has already been planned and includes:
9th February Katie Braida
5th April Wendy Lawrence
5th July Paul Taylor
Jane shared her making skills with us and started by showing us how she constructs her intricate cliff structures. She then went on to demonstrate the processes involved in making one of her runner ducks followed by a chicken. She generously shared her recipes for slips and colours and showed how these are applied.
Geoffrey gave us a fascinating talk on his background and sources of inspiration. Following this with a superb demonstration of his making techniques. Throwing a bowl, a vessel and finishing with one of his tiny teapots and its component parts. After lunch he turned and finished these also describing his glazing methods.