Sunday, 18 October 2009

Wednesday, 14 October 2009

Swindon series of cups

i'm an unable to work in the workshop as i have adetached retina and will find out tomorrow whether I can get back normal shortly or whether I need an operation after which I will be in bed for 4 weeks!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Sunday, 27 September 2009

Monday, 21 September 2009

Antiquity Journal

Antiquity Journal: "Visit WebsiteCall for PapersDownload TAG poster (.pdf)RegisterIntroduction"

Crafts and sustainibility
MAKING FUTURES:the crafts in the context of emerging global sustainability agendas'

I ahve copied and pasted this synopsis of the Conference into my blog. unfortunately I have missed it .

Alias is pleased to collaborate with Plymouth College of Art on this international conference, which aims to advance understanding and debate around the territory where craft practice and aesthetics confront contemporary social and political imperatives. The purpose of ‘Making Futures' is to improve understanding of the ways in which the contemporary crafts are practiced in relation to significant and new emerging agendas relating to global environmental and sustainability issues.
The objectives include trying to understand whether these ‘agendas’ offer opportunities for the crafts to redefine and reconstitute themselves as less marginalised, more centrally productive forces in society, through new formulations and/or re-articulations of practices, identities, positions and markets, in ways that might engage more closely with contemporary social and cultural needs.
‘Making Futures: the crafts in the context of emerging global sustainability agendas’ aims to bring together an international cast of academics, practitioners, curators, campaigners, activists, and representatives from associated organisations and agencies, to develop and explore the conference theme. The conference seeks to incorporate a diverse range of practice-based case studies with approaches rooted in historical and cultural modelling encompassing social, technological, critical-theoretical, and economic and political perspectives.
The keynote speakers will be John Thackara, acclaimed author on issues concerning art and design sustainability issues and founder and director of ‘Doors of Perception’, the internationally respected design futures & sustainability network (, and Carl Honoré, the author of ‘In Praise of Slow’, the book that helped define the global slow movement (

It is often claimed that the most valuable discussions at academic conferences take place in the bar, and, with this in mind the Alias led initiative practice and reflection will be running a plenary session in a nearby pub at the end of the conference. The aim is to create the ideal conditions in which an informally structured discussion of the key themes can happen, in a relaxed environment, between peers. This will be an opportunity to capitalize on the energy generated by the conference and to send participants home with a sense of having joined a vital community of interest.

Monday, 14 September 2009

Anew thrown saucer rather than a slab made construction.

The thrown disc/saucer is much crisp and looks better than the slab made type of disk.
The three cups -thrown in porcelain -two with craft crank 'saucers'one with a very fine thrown porcelainsaucer.

Monday, 7 September 2009

Saturday, 5 September 2009

Wednesday, 2 September 2009

Work the Metaphor!!

From functional to non-functional and back again to functional!!

Honicknowl Book of the Dead

Kenny Knight has had his book of poetry published- just lovely!!!!

Tuesday, 1 September 2009

I work in the NHS as a nurse. i have just seen the Shock Doctrine by Naomi Klein on TV last night . On my blog I keep a list of websites and blogs that I follow-one of them is the Nursing Times website. The latest headline is "NHS could cut 6,500 nurse jobs as recession bites". I thought the recession was ending. My analysis is they want to keep us in crisis so that they can privatise and de-skill our NHS -its already under pressure, and I say that5 from experince having worked on wards as a general nurse.

Monday, 31 August 2009

Sunday, 30 August 2009

Saturday, 29 August 2009


I am using different clays to make a range of bowl forms so that I can explore colour and texture as an essetial part of the bowl. These non traditional forms explore shape, volume, line, exterior and interior, and relationships between these things within the form of the bowl. They also pose questions about use, non-use, function and non-function. The question which it will pose is in the ilk of 'when is a teapot not a teapot'- when is a bowl not a bowl, when its is made intentionally in a sculptural way so that the viewer may ask why has the bowl been made like that? All objects have meaning , I am trying to work the meaning , "Every object has the capacity to stand for something other than what is apparent. Work on what it stands for". Bruce mau Incomplete mainfesto So how do you do that with a functional object- you make it non-functional.
I do, however, very much beleive in the possiblility of affordable, (Winchcombe Pottery, Gloucestershire)manage to keep costs 'affordable')home made functional ceramics- there is not the the economic or political will to revive a home based ceramics industry. Thus our cheap porcelains are made in the east, imported have air miles- etc, etc.
it is not worth making functional porcelain ceramics as they are so unreasinably costly. All mass produced tableware is handmade anyway. Someone asked me to make them a set of plates- I replied its not worth - go and buy some really nice limited edition one from the department stores. They had no idea how much it would cost.
These issues are inherent within all studio produced ceramic vessels. How do i work this metaphor into the pots.

The market for handmade, studio porcealain table ware is very small and exclusive because of the high capital investment to the maker, cost of porcelain(although this works out relatively cheap when itemised for each unit), the cost of selling in galleries. To practice as a studio potteer is costly. Even though the Craft Council have made a good case for the Craft indusrtry on economic terms-'Making It In the
21st Century'. A whole range for all markets is no longer produced in this country. there is no mass market for functional studio tableware.

Now that the industry is in the east and not home based there is no tangible tradition anymore of mass produced ceramics as a backdrop to production. The skills and infrastrucure have been lost.


Saturday, 22 August 2009

In the workshop again.

I love this type of bowl. It has no conventional footring and has a rounded bottom so, it falls over and finds its own centre of gravity. it has been made as symetrically as possible. I want to put a lush turquoise glaze inside with a matt black vitrified slip on the exterior. it will have several companions tomorrow.

Sunday, 9 August 2009

Sunday, 5 July 2009

At last i've been in the workshop!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

I made more than these but I liked these ones after I had made them

Saturday, 13 June 2009

I've taken up cycling to work.

What a beautiful sight- I love riding bikes and I'd forgotten how much. They are a liberating technology.

Friday, 12 June 2009

havn't been in studio

i am currently commuting to my day job- Swindon and I havn't been in the workshop. Must get there soon. Family accidents and friends require time.

Saturday, 23 May 2009

Wool archaeology and Rock an Roll.

I love Robert Palmer, shame he died.

Thursday, 7 May 2009

Wool and Archaeology-I went to Avebury

I love standing stones! and mobile technology is wonderful- i took these ppix on my mobile. Amazing quality.

Monday, 27 April 2009


Manufacturing may be in recession but we studio designer/makers are continuing to make goods and keeping alive more traditional forms of manufacturing process and, some amongst us, industrial processes.

Sunday, 26 April 2009

Tuesday, 21 April 2009

Knitted Strawberry pendant is on the Victoria and Albert website

Follow this link

Monday, 20 April 2009

Kiln Emptying!!!!!!!!

I love emptying kilns after a glaze firing- always hoping for that 'kiln moment' when you know that somethings special is guna come out. I haven't had that for a while. don't do glaze firing so often as I work so slowly but.....alas I haven't quite achieved the animation that i was looking for woth these cups but boy are they good to drink from. They fit in the hand as though they were made for them, they bare big and wide and although the rims are wonky and handles not really functional, the material is an insulator so they don't conduct heat. They are good to hold and the glaze is just so silky its so sensual its like smoothing a piece of satin.These cups bounce when they are dropped. They have no air miles on them, they are made locally. They are not fired to full stoneware temp of 1280 nut to 1240, the porcelain matures at this temperature thus cutting down their carbon footprint. The clay is likely made from products from the southwest although its probably been up to stoke on trent and back to the distributors, the possibility of making porcelain clays in southwest is possible if the economic will would be there. We will all be potters!!!!!!!!!!! These cups focus the attention on the act of drinking.