Saturday, 24 December 2011

Merry Christmas!

Here we are approaching the end of another year. Thank you all for tuning in to my sporadic blog posts. I haven't made many pots in recent weeks, so my blogging has been a bit lax, but I promise that I intend to start the new year with renewed vigour and enthusiasm. I have to, because I have a lot of commitments in next year's calendar already.

It's been a wonderful year, not least because I've had the opportunity to meet so many of my virtual friends in the flesh during the past twelve months. You are special people.

Thank you so much to all those who have done so much for me. A special mention for Dan, Hollis and Ron in the States; Marky Mark, Matt, Alex, Hannah, Frank, Different Dave, Nic, PY over here. I am blessed with having the very best of friends without whom I am nothing. And big thanks of course to those of you who have encouraged me and bought my pots.

The boys have gone out to the pub with their friends this evening. I miss them being little kiddies and remember with warm affection those Christmas Eves, when they couldn't sleep with the excitement of it all. I too would lie awake in anticipation of their smiley little faces. Hil's here wrapping gifts for their stockings - maybe they're still children, just briefly, once a year.

So now a few days of family time. Tomorrow we visit my brother, then later in the week, my parents and my sister. It will be fantastic to see everybody and to relax for a while with the people I love.

I Wish you all a very Merry Christmas and send every best wish for a healthy and prosperous 2012.

Monday, 12 December 2011

Check this out!!!!

I received an email this morning from Alex, with a link to this amazing piece of film. It's a British Pathe film, shot in 1930, of 'A man kneading some clay outside a brick building'.

This is so exciting for me. Helen Walsh, curator at York Museum, identified this unnamed potter as none other than my great hero, Michael Cardew, making pots at Winchcombe Pottery and sent it to Alex.

The slipware pots Cardew made in Winchcombe were in my opinion, his finest works and to see him as a young man, making and decorating them is incredibly moving. I've never seen this footage before, I can't think that many people have in recent times. Thank you Helen and Alex.

Enjoy this piece of lost pottery history everybody


Saturday, 10 December 2011

Teabowls in Tokyo

A while ago, I had a visit to my workshop from Koichiro Isaka, who is the owner of Gallery St Ives, Tokyo. He asked me if I would make some teabowls for an exhibition in his gallery.

The particular type of teabowls he asked for were Chawan. Of course I've never made such things, as I take my inspiration from the English tradition, rather than looking towards the East, so I proceeded to make them with some trepidation.Here are some of them. They're a very English interpretation of a Japanese form, I decided I had to just make, what I know how to make.
The exhibition opened last night. These photographs were taken by Koichiro in the gallery yesterday. There are about 80 Chawan in the show from some amazing makers.
There are pots by UK potters
And from Japan,
You can download the pdf catalogue here

Thursday, 8 December 2011

Slippy jugs

Hello all

I've been having a bit of a struggle to get back in to making lately. I was exhausted after all the crazy hours of hard work leading up to the show and wound up feeling somewhat burned out and lacking inspiration. I don't know why, the show was great and I came home full of enthusiasm, but it's been difficult to get started again.

Yesterday I unplugged the phone and turned up the rock and roll and got stuck in to making some big fat jugs. I'm going to do the same again today. I'll post some pictures later.These 8lb jugs have been under polythene for a couple of weeks, waiting for a coat of slip, which they were given yesterday.

This leafy jug has a green slip.
Winter is upon us now, although down here in the softy South West, we've had very few frosts, just lots of rain with sunny bits and the resulting rainbows.

Well I must get to work, back soon
Bye for now