Visiting Artists Summer 2018
July 16th - September 16th
Rachel Brown is an award winning jeweller who explores the technique of drawing on enamel. This unusual enamelling process involves simply drawing onto the surface of the enamel with a graphite pencil. Rachel has eliminated colour altogether, a bold move in an otherwise traditionally brightly coloured medium, she uses white enamel, exploring the colours that you can get when firing white enamel together with the various tonal shades of grey from the graphite.
The theme of her work is mark making, exploring repetitive patterns, lines and textures. Familiar shapes often appear but no two pieces of work are alike therefore making the jewellery unique, one-off pieces. Rachel’s work has been described as ‘stylish and very wearable’.
I make contemporary tableware inspired by Mid-Century modern in monochrome and decorated ranges. I'm one of the few ceramicists in Britain using tin glaze, whose opaque white surface lends itself to my style of free brush decoration.
At school I studied A-level art, specialising in art history, and read history at Keele university, near the North Staffordshire Potteries,where I spent my spare time in the art room learning to make pottery on the wheel. I trained at the Rodmell Pottery with Judith Partridge and set up a studio in Camborne,but financial pressures forced a long break,during which I work in public administration. After early retirement I took a BA in Ceramics at Harrow in 2009. My studio is in St. Albans and exhibit my pottery throughout the UK.
Tableware challenge me to make pottery that is both beautiful and practical. I am interested in the place where art and manufacture meet and I subscribe to the ideal of Charles and Ray Eames of getting the best to the greatest number of people for the least.
Bethan works from her studio in the beautiful mid-Devon countryside, UK. Previously, she studied under the renowned ceramicist Lisa Hammond MBE at Kigbeare Studios & Gallery, following her graduation in Contemporary Ceramic Practice BA (Hons) from Newcastle College. During her time at Kigbeare, Bethan refined her skills whilst working in a busy studio pottery and developed her own individual style that’s reflected in her wares.
Bethan’s work is decorated in a free and lively style; with natural motifs such as peapods and sunflowers inspired by her surroundings of the Devonshire countryside and sketches from her allotment. Bethan produces contemporary slipware created using a time-honoured process. Bethan’s work is made using earthenware clay, fired in an oxidised environment and rendered with a food-safe glaze to withstand everyday usage. Her wide array of products are designed for daily use, to enhance the home and be enjoyed by all.
I studied mainly ceramics at college, where I indulged my love of materials, texture and colour. After several years working as a community artist, I found my way into jewellery making, which has provided me with a modest but really enjoyable life.
I'm not a trained silversmith but do know a little about kilns and heat processes, so that's why I started enamelling onto silver and copper and my work has an unusual quality to it.
Each piece is individually designed and hand made: I hope that people enjoy wearing a little piece of art that has been worked by hand, rather than something that has come from a factory!
‘It may start with a landscape – but in the end it has to stand as a painting in its own right.I’m not trying to reproduce nature but to distil some of the essence of it, in colours, shapes and emotions.’
I was an illustrator for many years, also teaching illustration at degree level. Working for clients and following briefs has its own constraints and demands but now I work for my own enjoyment and satisfaction. Sketchbooks are a large part of the process; looking, selecting, translating and mark-making. Some images will find another life, in another media or a different size – and perhaps another home. I live on the Welsh border and some of them are happy in England or Wales. Others have found their way to Scotland, Spain, New England and Australia.
If it made me smile then I’m happy. If it made you smile I’m even happier.
Making driftwood animals and objects ticks lots of boxes for me – as well as filling lots of boxes too. I love recycling, re-using, finding new uses for odd objects. I still get to be creative.In previous lives I’ve been a local government officer, countryside officer, graphic designer and lecturer in art and design history. I love living on the Welsh border but, like the River Wye, I just have to go to the sea – to the wonderful sea and sky. Now I have an excuse for combing beaches or car boot sales and filling my workshop with ‘interesting’ odds and ends.
I make quirky animals, birds and boats etc. People put them in windows, on walls, in conservatories, in gardens. They might even give them names.