Bevere Gallery is proud to be one of the supporters of this prodigious Worcester event
Many of our local artists and makers are opening their homes during the August Bank Holiday Week End
VALERIE BRIGGS who has been teaching and exhibiting here at Bevere for very many years is opening her home and will be painting and showing her British Wildlife and Fauna watercolours, prints and gift cards.
This 10th Anniversary year has provided the opportunity to reflect on and select the makers that have provided us with so much pleasure during the last decade but also the chance to involve makers who have yet to show here – indeed I never cease to be amazed at the superb ceramicists who have yet to appear on our featured maker programme. This month's featured makers embrace both
MO JUPP is an elder statesman of the ceramic world having been a teacher and mentor to so many ceramicists. He now lives and works in France. The move across the Channel has regenerated his creative vigour. This unique sculptor is a definite ‘one off’. His apparently simple approach to figurative ceramics is deceptive; behind every piece there is a perceptive insight into the human form.
is a new maker to us. Her intricately patterned and coloured pieces have an instant appeal. Caroline’s main business is in consultancy having trained as an Architect at Cambridge; If this is the product of part time work in ceramics we can only imagine the outcome if she were full time! I was impressed initially with her use of pattern and colour which is particularly striking and I suspect that many of our visitors will feel the same.
ANDY PALIN is showing with us again having recovered from spinal surgery. His reticulated glazes and elegantly potted vessels have always been popular. He is meticulous in the finishing of his pieces and accepts nothing but perfection in his eyes. We are able to enjoy the fruits of his creative drive. This entirely new body of work - which I have just seen for the first time - extends the range of his work and is particularly sculptural. As always his making and decoration skills are meticulous. Once again a delight to show his work here.
As ever we try hard to ensure that there is contrast and diversity
demonstrating the immense range of skills and creativity in ceramics.
If you think I have been overgenerous with my praise for these makers –
come and judge for yourself.
As summer sunshine finally arrives, the Gallery's featured maker programme continues to demonstrate how quality ceramics can also give so much warmth and light as well as pleasure. This month all three superb makers have shown with us before on several occasions.
Emma Rodgers has become an international figure in studio ceramics since she graduated from Wolverhampton. In fact, she showed her early pieces at Bevere at the onset of her professional career. It was evident then that she had a remarkable talent. Emma's ability to reflect the essence of the figures that she makes - both animal and human – is often magical and her work in bronze is exceptional. Whatever pieces she decides to show they will bring joy to the Gallery and our visitors for sure.
Tanya Gomez has shown with us before but, importantly, not since taking an MA at the Royal Collegeof Art. The impact is seen in the organic nature of her sensuous vessels and her striking use of contrasting colour. The RCA’s MA course has transformed many potters and Tanya is no exception. It is the opportunity to spend time reflecting on one's current practice and the direction and focus of creative energy that makes the impact.
Each of Tanya's vessels that we are showing this month, whether small or large, has a presence which, in my view, comes from the passion that pervades her making.
Wendy Kershaw is an artist on clay. Her wall mounted framed images are unlike any other maker's that I know. Her work is amusing , quirky, and so well executed. When Wendy first showed at Bevere the response was very positive indeed and we are certain that she will be welcomed back by many. Wendy crosses the so called craft/fine art divide but for me apart from the evident artistic merit, each piece makes me smile - always a bonus. Her draughtsmanship and design sense also add to the feeling that there is an exceptional talent at work here. Come and see for yourself.
As well as our featured makers there will be the usual diverse range of quality ceramics. Time spent looking and touching these pots will add so much to your day – it does mine!
If you are in any doubt that we are in the middle of Summer – you might be forgiven for thinking that Autumn has arrived early this year – then hopefully, the featured makers at Bevere this month should brighten the outlook. 'Masters of their craft' is a well worn cliché but is absolutely right to describe the makers who are part of our 10th Anniversary celebration.
We have been privileged to show Walter Keeler's fine pieces for a number of years. He has been internationally recognised for much of his long career and his latest work is elegantly designed and executed with such consummate skill, as ever. These are characteristics that have defined Walter's pieces for a long time. As I handle any pot, I am conscious of the eye of a Master and the presence which each generates. There is the curator's challenge, to allow them to speak for themselves and for Walter of course.
Mark Dally has also shown here a number of times and this latest group from him confirms why. He is arguably one of the finest sliptrail decorators around. The completeness of his vision, confidence of execution and obvious facility with the sliptrailer is a joy. Again, we have a maker whose name is spoken by each piece. His work epitomises the notion that our eating and drinking is enhanced by studio pots. Pleasure has to be the right word.
If you feel that I am exaggerating the qualities of these two makers, then come and see and judge for yourself.
We also have a small group of magnificent sculptures from Ostinelli and Priest. A large bull and horse are classic pieces. They have character and the nuances of tone and stance ensure that each is an original interpretation of these fine beasts.
Debbie Barber is also here again and is another confident and skilled raku decorator. Her bowls and other vessels are always popular with our visitors.
Half way through the year's featured maker programme already and we have so much more high quality ceramics for you. The feedback on the programme this anniversary year has been very positive, particularly regarding the diversity and undoubted quality of the exhibits. This month we have three makers featuring who have shown with us before and in one case over a number of years.
ANNIE PEAKER is a ceramic sculptress of instantly recognisable style. She has sold out on the previous occasions she has shown with us. The pieces feature children and young people from the mid 20th Century. Her highly skilled modelling reproduces clothes and demeanour so well. It is her ability to capture the essence of a moment that appeals so widely and I hope that the group of pieces we have in this month's feature will have strong appeal.
RICHARD PHETHEAN has not been with us for a while. He has taken over the Chairmanship of the Craft Potters Association and this makes considerable demands upon his time. I have seen the shape and decoration of his pieces change over the years and he ensures that each pot has a strong contemporary appeal. His work has great presence and looks good singularly or in small groups. Hope you agree – as always, let me know if you take a different view.
PETER HAYES has shown at Bevere many times and there is a piece or two always to be found on show. Peter is one of the most creative ceramicists and sculptors of his generation. Each piece provokes interest in design, his making processes and decoration. He is also happy to break away from his ceramic roots. His time spent working in India and establishing a craft village has meant a very useful exchange of working techniques and materials, all of which support an infinitely creative spirit. You will gather that I have the highest regard for Peter, as I am sure many of you do too.
So there we have it – another stimulating group of makers. Add to this the many other makers we will have on show and there will be much to stimulate and enjoy.
The year advances at a rate and I find myself excited by the unfolding featured makers programme put together many months ago. May is particularly interesting as it brings together the work of such contrasting makers, two of whom are new to the gallery and the third, a good friend of Bevere, showing work indoors for the first time.
Nigel Edmondson has shown at Bevere almost all of the past decade. His attractive, skilfully made garden vessels and sculptures are regularly featured in the courtyard and his popularity has never waned. This month we will have his work in the gallery, as well as the courtyard. Nigel brings together a strong deign sense, decoration that emphasises texture as well as colour and work that is evocative of the landscape where he lives and works.
Nigel Lambert has not shown at Bevere before, although he has been a significant maker over the past several years. His slip-decorated wood-fired earthenware has earned him international recognition. His thrown and altered pots combine bold contemporary shapes, his unique style of decoration and a strong sense of function. Over the years, I have increasingly enjoyed the mix of unequivocally contemporary decoration and functionality – the epitome of three dimensional art. Nigel certainly catches the eye.
Guy Routledge is a ceramic sculptor also new to the Gallery. He hand builds a wide range of figurative pieces, many are monochrome but colour also features in many of his pieces. As readers familiar with Bevere Gallery will know, a distinctive voice is a key criterion for showing here and Guy ticks all the boxes for us.
As well as our featured makers, we will be showing a wide variety of ceramicists that we represent. The gallery space will demonstrate the tremendous range of styles and making techniques that defines studio ceramics today.
As our regular web site readers will know, we are sadly without the sculptures of John Maltby who was one of our planned featured makers for April. After illness, he may not be making again and we are very grateful to have had so many opportunities to show his work over the last ten years.
However, notwithstanding John's reluctant withdrawal we have three makers of outstanding quality Ingrid Saag is a new maker to Bevere and I am delighted to be showing a fine group of her painterly vessels whose colour and flair will be just right for the first feature of Spring. I am attracted to artist / ceramicists as they bring an added dimension to their work. Colour is one of Ingrid's motivations and her figurative and floral designs bear testament to her enthusiasm. What better harbinger of the season.
Emily Myers is a well known presence in the gallery and we are delighted to be having another group of her latest work. We have many conversations with visitors about her pieces and it is the elegance of design, subtlety of
decoration and the high level skills which attract the most comment. Whilst her work is self evidently 'Emily Myers' each new group demonstrates her concern to develop and expand her range and the possibilities without losing the essential qualities which define her.
Matthew Horne has just returned from working in the USA and although he has been extremely busy of late, we have the pleasure of showing the work of another of our regular makers. Two features of Matt's pieces are outstanding – the quality of his thrown porcelain and the crystalline glazing which must rate amongst the best of those makers currently using this long established and difficult technique. This latest group has been a pleasure to handle. I speak as someone who was never a great fan of crystalline glazing until, that is, I came across the work of Matt Horne. It was the combination of glaze and pot shape which did it for me and I know he is a favourite of so many now.
I am also hoping we will have some new work from John and Jude Jelfs. It has been too long since we last showed their distinctly contrasting styles and I look forward to some surprises.
As always I hope there is much here to stimulate hand and eye and to get you talking about the joys of contemporary studio pottery.