New work and exhibitions!
I ddarllen yr erthygl yn y Gymraeg – cliciwch yma.
My aim in the last 6 months or so has been to concentrate on developing new work and applying for more exhibitions within Wales and the UK. I have been working on some new pieces that are similar in inspiration to the previous collection but are more fragmented and are directly inspired by geometry and origami. I feel that although the previous collection still has scope to develop and grow – I’ve always wanted to explore how paper folding can be adopted to ceramics, and whether the transition from one medium to another would be effective. I’m aware that many other ceramicists have used porcelain to portray the delicate nature of paper and it lends itself well to the transparent aspect of origami. I’m also interested in exploring the use of porcelain, but I’m currently interested in the idea of using earthenware ceramics – in particular white earthenware slip with a black / grey addition. I’m also interested in finding out how terracotta lends itself to origami and combining the more industrial, architectural materials with geometric shapes.
I have made a mould of the origami design I had been folding and assembling as part of my sister’s wedding two years ago. Since working with this design, I was keen to see how effective this would be in ceramics. Here’s the mould below, and an image of the hanging origami ornaments created from paper originally.
Image courtesy of Tim Macklen @timmacklen
The mould produced is a two-part mould with a plug addition – this has enabled me to remove the excess clay slip whilst leaving the piece to dry within the mould with the plug in. Whilst working on this mould I wanted to look at planters for cacti and succulents. The industrial feel of the clay hopefully will portray architectural and modernist inspiration.
Here is the piece designed as a planter.
Another piece I have been working on in a cylindrical vessel inspired by the modernist movement. Similarly, to the previous mould described above, I have included a plug to this mould. This plug acts as a stopper for the clay – but can also be taken out once the suitable thickness has been accomplished. This then makes the cylindrical piece a lampshade. I have yet to test the effectiveness of this piece as a lampshade – but feel that it would be more successful in porcelain due to the translucent nature of the clay.
In the last few months I have been focusing on making, with new ideas flourishing each time a mould is slip-casted – this is the best time for inspiration to flow. In the next few months I would also like to create bowls and mugs that are similar in design to the origami bowl. These would then create their own collection. I feel that this work is more similar in style to the pieces created in my second year of studying. I designed a cup and saucer set inspired by Buckminster Fuller that fit into each other and were more focused than the current collection on the fundamental values of modernist values. I feel that this might be an interesting way for my work to develop.
I feel that creating moulds that are multi-functional is an effective use of my time and gives me the freedom to change and adapt pieces once the mould is made. Slip-casting is a repetitive process, by nature, so having the ability to adapt and personalise pieces that come out of the mould is hugely of interest to me.
I have been interested in Japanese art forms since University, and had looked at Kintsugi, the Japanese art of repairing broken pottery, as inspiration for my current collection. The art form repairs broken areas with a lacquer dusted or mixed with powdered gold or silver. I found it fascinating that as a philosophy, the repair is considered as part of the history of the object, rather than something to disguise. This can be compared within Western craft as ‘the mark of the maker.’ Artist and maker intentionally leave their mark on their work in order that the audience can see the individuals’ work within the object. Kintsugi celebrates the flawed or imperfect, valuing the marks of wear and use of an object.
My most recent angular vase also reflects the element of imperfection and suggests an inspiration in architecture and geometry. This piece was initially created as a commissioned piece, but I have since included it as part of the collection as it was so well received by customers. It reflects my architectural drawings and sketches effectively and links both the geometric and traditional ceramic inspirations in my work.
Image courtesy of Tim Macklen @timmacklen
In the last few months I have been applying for more opportunities with my artwork and have secured two new exhibitions so far this year. These include exhibiting with other mixed media artists at the Bauhaus 100 exhibition in Caernarfon, within their new multi-disciplinary art space CARN. This exhibition is a celebration of the Bauhaus movement, 100 years since it was founded in 1919. Here are my pieces as part of this exhibition.