Friday, 30 December 2011


Now that Christmas festivities are over, with the exception of seeing the new year in, my thoughts have rapidly returned to my MA.  Taking the time to mull over my final ideas and direction in which I wish to culminate my research has been worthwhile, reconfirming my ideals, what I wish to achieve and more importantly an overview of where my work sits within the sphere of the ceramics, installation art world.

When I look back at the past semester, the amount of physical work produced seems minimal, and not seeing the volume in the culmination of real objects played on my mind. It has taken me a while to see past that, and realise the journey I have been on over the past three months has been a more theoretical one, of intense never-ending evaluation and understanding.  Putting my practise under scrutiny and assessing; why I do what I do, who do I do it for, does what I do serve its purpose,  has been both ardous and thought provoking.  Stepping back from my own work and looking at it objectively has been challenging, but now I have turned a corner the rewards for viewing my work 'under a microscope' are apparent in my thinking, my judgement about what is possible, and the ways in which I able to achieve the desired outcomes.

Time to begin the final phase...............


Saturday, 1 October 2011

Invigilating Day

Well, today I am spending in Sam Scorer Gallery, Lincoln invigilating the last full day of the latest Contemporary Crafts Network (CCN) exhibition 'Erosion'.  

Its been a long two weeks from the set up to take-down tomorrow but from a personal point of view very worthwhile.  This is the first exhibition I have co-ordinated for the group since taking over the role of Exhibitions Officer and it has been a fantastic learning curve. 

My artists statement for the exhibition reads;

“The past is only the present become invisible and mute; and because it is invisible and mute, it’s memorised glances and it’s murmurs are infinitely precious. We are tomorrow’s past.” Mary Webb

Whilst on holiday earlier this year I came across this quote its words poignant reminders about the fragility of life.

Our lives are transient, ever moving with families no longer staying in one home for generations. Homes are where families grow, place their roots, live, laugh and love, before upping sticks and moving. Although we start again in a new location, traces of us remain, echoes of past inhabitants linger on the walls, sometimes painted, sometimes papered. How many of us have stripped the walls in preparation of applying new decoration to discover layer upon layer of old wallpaper?

The pieces I am exhibiting ‘remnant’ and ‘murmurs’ pay homage to the erosion of living, reflecting the traces left by people in the spaces they occupy.

'Murmurs' 2011

'Remnant' 2011

'Erosion' CCN Exhibition @ Sam Scorer Gallery, Lincoln September 2011

Monday, 26 September 2011

New Academic Year Begins

Today has been rather fun, its the first time we have met some of the new MA Designers.  John asked us (the continuing year group) to prepare a two minute presentation of our work and then deliver this to the new group.

For me this was a catalyst in selecting my way forward.  The pressure of not wanting to appear indecisive or to not have a direction to my work was encouragement enough to spend time re-evaluating where I was and where I wanted to go and provide a clear pathway for the coming months.

It was whilst reviewing my work with Paul that the connections were made, and everything feel into place so my project title for the MA Design can now be revealed;

Human Interaction with barriers and barricades: Our Perceptions of Walls. 

Monday, 15 August 2011

Moving Forward

After focusing on my upcoming exhibitions including the MA Work In Progress show it was really good to spend half an hour catching up with my course mentor Jim Cheshire today.  Discussing where I am and the direction in which I am taking my work has helped me focus.

'What am I armouring?' being a critical question I have to ask myself over the next week along with how I aim to move my work from its current 2d state of panels to the 3d installations through which I intend to express my ideas.

Why 3d?  Is something I ask myself repeatedly.  During my BA the focus of work became about producing elegant vessels with flawless surfaces, that were tactical to handle, but did I want to continue making vessels? The answer to which is both yes and no, vessels are clearly useful items, that fit neatly in the home and are suitable for most galleries, but to get my name out there as a maker and to challenge myself through the MA programme I feel a strong desire to produce something more visually stimulating that involves the viewer, encourages them to touch (which is something forbidden by most galleries).

'Caermonialis' 170mm x 300mm
Smoke-fired porcelain panel.
The next steps for me involve the making of 2d paper panels of 'armour' based upon my sketchbook drawings.  These will be draped over three dimensional objects, basic shapes to human form and photographed.  From these images I will be able to see how the panels behave over form.

I also would like to see how smoke fired pattern behaves over segments, does the pattern become fragmented?, is it easily defined?, what happens at the edges of each segment?  Up until now I have only smoke fired an image/design on a vessel or a large flat panel as shown, so this in-itself will be an interesting experiment.

My next mentor meeting is September 12 at 11am,  my aim is to present three pathways for further exploration and to use the meeting to discuss their merits and pitfalls before embarking on the start of my major project.

This meeting will take place after the MA exhibition has begun on September 9th so will also provide an opportunity to review the work I have submitted and receive feedback from Jim who will have attended the opening night.

Sunday, 7 August 2011

Preview Review

Last night was the preview night for the 'Revival' Exhibition at The Old Hall in Gainsborough, the show is on until 30 November 2011.  The preview night is always nerve racking - being on hand to speak to guests and receive feedback, good or bad.  The wine, always on hand is a very good ice breaker along with having family there for moral support.

Nerves need not have prevailed however, as it was a good evening, turnout was higher than expected and the comments received were very positive.  With enquires about prospective smoke firing workshops and new contacts made within council based artists co-operatives it was a successful night.

Thursday, 4 August 2011

On Display

New work needs titles, and for me this is always a time of deliberation and great pondering. With my work being based around the idea of armour, the obvious sprang to mind; defence, barricade, boundary, but these seemed a little flat.

Inspiration hit from the direction of my boyfriend who mentioned Roman military formations.  The words 'lorica segmentata' began an indulgent hour of research.

'Murus', Lorica Squamata' and 'Scutum'

'Lorica Segmentata'


Monday, 1 August 2011

Mounting an exhibition is always a fraught time, and my latest proved that no matter how prepared you are, you need to be ready for surprises.

The Old Hall in Gainsborough is a fantastic venue, dating back the the 16th century, the vaulted beamed gallery space is beautiful and I feel very privileged to exhibit in such surroundings.   The nature of the building and its age made the hanging of work interesting with screwdrivers and nails rolling along the floor and spirit levels providing little in the way of assistance.  After a few long hours and a lot of standing back and adjusting it all came together.

This is the first time I will be showcasing work relating to my masters theme 'naked', I am looking forward to receiving feedback from both the public and my peers.   The preview is August 6th 2010 at 6pm and I will definitely be enjoying a relaxing glass of wine.