Ahh where to begin…Finally I am getting around to writing a blog, just a little something to keep you all up to date with what I am getting up to and hopefully an interesting insight into the life of a ceramic designer.
June has been a very exciting time for me as on the 5th my first ever solo show opened in the absolutely fabulous Atelier Design (www.atelier-design.co.uk). Atelier-Design is a dynamic and contemporary Design Studio based in the vibrant heart of Belfast City Centre specialising in Interior Design, Architecture and Mid Century Furniture. Atelier-Design is owned by the wonderful Architect and Interior Designer duo James Fairley and Victor Branco, who have recently opened up their beautiful top floor studio on Wellington Place to host monthly art exhibitions. They have had a range of exhibitions (photography, painting, print and my favourite ‘From Process to Pattern’ by Abigail*Ryan Homewares) mostly showcasing local talent.
My exhibition, ‘Letters from the East’ presents both new commercial products and exhibition pieces that share common themes of pattern, functionality and process. The pieces sit beautifully amongst the array of stunning mid-century furniture creating their own unique dialogue. The seductive dark walls along with the vibrancy of their carefully selected fabrics and vintage ornaments was the perfect backdrop for my signature blue and white, Bone-China vessels and wall mounted pieces.
"Letters from the East" explores the methods of combining traditional making and decorating processes with digital ceramic transfers on fine bone china while creating contemporary ceramics that are enriched with social and historical references.
The vessels both functional and dysfunctional, intend to question common values of the function of a form, enabling the viewer to alter their feelings on a particular object. The objects seek to narrate certain historical and social contexts through the use of imagery and text.
Vessels black, white and blue represent the three stages of the application of cobalt on clay as beautifully depicted in the Letters of Père d’Entrecolles. The French Priest, who was essentially practising industrial espionage, revealed details of China’s porcelain production in his letters written in 1712 and 1722. He described how the cobalt changed from a black powder to being buried by a white glaze and finally emerging from the kiln;
‘but the fire makes it appear in all its beauty, almost in the same way as the natural heat of the sun makes the most beautiful butterflies, with all their tints, come out of their eggs’
The opening night was a great success, thank you to all who came along, it was so nice to get chatting with some interesting characters and receiving feedback on pieces that had never been shown before. Exhibiting at Atelier-Design has been such an amazing opportunity for me and a real highlight in my career, I am so thankful to James and Victor, who worked so hard to put the show together and promote my work throughout the month. Thank you guys, you are AMAZING!!!