Candletsicks are made from eclectic pieces of Victorian detritus – clinker, cup-handles, teapot lids, gilded spouts, etc – found on the south bank of the Medway Estuary.
A theme which is about the survival of memories, become memento mori, the present way of the world compressed into a small statement but pressing and powerful.
Tiles discarded, unused, given a life of function with recycled slips and glazes and slumped in the kiln at high temperature.
When creating large forms I employ a collage approach, fusing together components of broken, unfired clay recycled from previous unfinished pieces.
An exhibition at the Contemporary Applied Arts entitled TEA’s UP gave an opportunity to link ideas of the triumph of the new, a throwaway paper cup or the old memory filled tea cup, and a personal collection of the saved, thrown away and recovered.
Our grandchildren went through soft toys at a pace. I began to see their kind in charity shops and used them in liquid clay to create a more permanent life story. Fixing them with firing and glaze in the Kiln.
A Selection of Early Work
Here is a selection of work from my main areas of interest over the past 30 years. I am fascinated by surfaces; their colour, texture and narrative possibilities.
The vessel, its interior and containment, are important to me. Hand building is my preferred way of working. Using the clay in different states, sloppy, plastic or dry, contributes to the process and final result.
Archaeology was an early interest; building model Saxon halls in the garden and ‘digging Egyptian tombs’, filling them with clay artefacts.
At the College I moved from design to clay. If I’d known I could make a living from potting I would have started earlier!