I am excited to say that from 1st August, I now have a new shared ceramic space, so that I can continue my practice when I am living in Edinburgh.
It’s a bit of a faff having to transport stuff back and forth to Gaucín, but needs must.
The new space is with the edinburgh ceramics workshop. They’ve just moved to a lovely new place – a converted school only 10 minutes’ walk from my flat. How lucky is that! They have several kilns, lots of wheels and – joy of joys – a beautiful new slab roller! And all on the ground floor, yippee.
It’s going to be great to get the chance to meet some other people working with clay.
Haven’t posted for ages! Here are a few pics from the finished plates last year:
They’ve all sold now but I have promised to make some more.
I missed Art Gaucin this year because I didn’t spend enough time in Gaucín, but I am going to exhibit with Vivienne Whiffen in May 2020. So I might make some more of these plates for that. Here are some of the drawings I use:
Meanwhile, I am creating a new body of work based on the bull-on-a-rope, which I hate. It’s my reaction to it. I have decided to try to stress that bulls are sentient beings like us, and experience pain, fear, emotion just as we do. And therefore deserving of our compassion. And better treatment.
Looking forward to seeing some of you at this year’s Art Gaucin, on the last weekend of May and the first weekend of June. My studio is in my garden now and can be accessed via my back gate at 15 Calle Cañada Real.
Here is some work in progress:
This is my reaction to the bull-on-the-rope thing they do here on Easter Sunday…
I enjoy the quiet, contemplative qualities inherent in working with clay. My work at present focuses on my everyday life and what it means to me – in particular how everyday things and events, which may seem banal on the surface, actually offer a wealth of meaning and experience if approached in a contemplative, mindful way.
To this end I have decided to produce a series of drawings of the various things that interest or concern me in my daily life. Recently I produced some drawings relating to domestic animals, and in particular the various dogs I encounter. Using ink and wet paper, I have tried to produce images that quickly capture the essence of the subject. Then I use these images as a resource to produce ceramics, trying to capture the same swiftness of line. The vessel in this photo isn’t particularly successful, because it is perhaps a little too sentimental, but I hope it may give an idea of what I’m trying to create. And perhaps it is right that it is sentimental, because this is my dog and I love her a surprising amount. Of course she is a substitute for my sons, the elder of whom is dead and the younger of whom is now an Angry Young Man who says I should learn to live without him. So this rather trite image actually contains several layers of meaning.
When I use these images it is important to me to create functional ceramic objects, which can become part of everyday life. I use one of these vessels and I think, ‘this is my life, this is my world’ and it creates a small moment of mindfulness; and I hope I can offer this moment to the other people who may use my work. I want these vessels to be part of a meal so they offer nourishment not just to me but to whoever uses them.
I suppose I am trying to ‘erase the line between art and life’ (Glen Adamson’s quote) . My work is hand-made, and I want it to look hand-made and not as though it comes from Ikea, by exhibiting the quirks of the hands that made it. But I hope this does not convey the idea of a debased craft – instead, I would like to honour my work with clay because I hope it offers an honest reference to the human condition and my place within it.