Thursday, 17 September 2009

USA Master Potter -Rarely Seen in the UK

Thomas Hoadley

New Work straight from American Studio
Thomas creates breathtaking porcelain vessels using the ancient technique of nerikomi, creating patterns with colored clay. Through a masterful, sometimes magical manipulation of the clays, delicate, organic, and often complex patterns are created. These award winning bowls are works of beauty and mystery and it is a great pleasure to display and sell these in the Gallery at Bevere

Thomas says
“My current ceramic work reflects an investigation into several areas of interest and an attempt to unify solutions to various visual problems. One interest is in the vessel as an abstract sculptural form and its many associations, both literal and metaphoric. Another is pattern and colour and how a collection of abstract elements can create various feelings or impressions. A third is an interest in the integration of surface pattern and three dimensional form.

The technique that I use, which results in a penetration of the pattern through the thickness of the wall so as to be visible on both the outside and the inside, is a partial solution to the problem; but from a strictly two dimensional standpoint I am also concerned with how the pattern relates to the form as seen in profile.

A certain degree of illusion of depth is created by some colour/pattern combinations and I enjoy the play of this implied visual depth vs. the "flat" modulating surface of the pot vs. the real depth that is present in the interior space. My aim is not, however, to create strong illusions nor representational or abstracted pictures on the pots.

My initial attraction to the nerikomi technique came from its organic union of pattern and structure. Rather than the former being applied to the latter, as in most decorative pottery traditions, the two are one and the same. The natural world abounds with this sort of union and as a result, offers endless inspiration for pattern making.

The other aspect that was particularly attractive to me was the translation of the physical properties of clay into a visual format. By this I mean that the very plasticity of the clay is made visible in the way that an imposed pattern is altered. Straight parallel lines are created by stacking up slices of variously colored clays but in the manipulation of the resulting soft block of clay, the lines become undulating or are perhaps made to taper down to a hair's breadth. Porcelain of course shows off this quality to its greatest extent but the principle is the same with any clay. I think of my patterns as being a collaboration between my imposed structure and the clay's wise alteration of that structure.

In addition to the natural sources, I have found inspiration for patterns in a number of other areas. Fabric design has recently been of great interest to me as well as a variety of non-ceramic craft traditions. Graphic design of all sorts serves as visual stimulation and colour ideas can come as easily from a magazine ad as from a rock, shell, or flower.”

Monday, 14 September 2009

Lots of Visitors... to a closed gallery!!!

On Tuesday and Wednesday of last week September's featured show in the New Space –

'Made In America' remained open whilst the Coach House Gallery & Café played host to a Corporate Group...

The Gallery team came in on Monday to take down our exhibition and help the client set up their paintings as the back drop to their presentations. Comfortable blue velvet conference chairs were laid out for 4 sessions each of 25 guests who were coming to enjoy a lap top presentation and listen to some inspiring and interesting talks.

After the hour presentation they enjoyed a buffet lunch - or tea in the case of the two afternoon sessions - in the ‘Café Upstairs’, lots of chat and a stroll in the Gallery’s wild woodland garden viewing the few sculptures still remaining from the last month’s Sculpture Trail. Wednesday's tea was actually taken in the Café Garden, as the weather was so splendid!

The organiser said that she had been delighted to find such a great venue with a difference for their cultured clients. She felt that The Gallery ticked all the boxes and offered a fantastic and relaxed atmosphere with all the staff being friendly and helpful with her clients. She reported that everyone had had a thoroughly enjoyable day and promised to revisit!

Thursday, 10 September 2009

Photographer - Ewen Merry - Death Valley and More

Ewen Merry is supporting three American master ceramists in The Gallery at Bevere's September Exhibition2009

Ewen says
"I started getting serious about photography in about 2001; I’d been showing a mate who was a very serious photographer and had got his ARPS years ago some photos. His critique made me realise I could do a lot better!
About the same time I saw the ‘Ansell Adams at 100’ exhibition in London - some of his work blew me away, so monochrome became my thing - I was very sniffy about colour back then. So I put together a darkroom at home and several 100 rolls of film later I have to say I’m not bad at hand printing!

I did my LRPS in 2004 (monochrome landscapes) and fully intended to do my ARPS, but I fell out with the RPS on a workshop day when I presented a panel of black and white images of Venice - ‘oh dear’ exclaimed the ancient rps panel judge, ‘Venice can really only be done in colour’. Even with my more recent conversion to colour I still think he was talking rubbish (polite version)

It was a trip to Scotland to photograph around Glencoe and Rannoch moor in January 2007 that changed my views - I got some fab colour shots on that trip.

I still like b&w, especially taking the whole process from image capture to print, there’s a purity about the process somehow.

That leads me to the ‘digital thing’, at the moment not for me as I like film and I’m happy that none of my prints, colour or b&w, have been near a computer - my aim is to try and get the exposure right in camera. Having said that I have just acquired a really neat digital compact (and its got a viewfinder!)- It’s going on holiday with me soon, which will be its first use in anger.

My film cameras are canon 35mm, but I may well move up to a large format camera in the future (just like the big boys use!)

At the moment the gallery is exhibiting my images of Death Valley as part of the
"Made in America" exhibition, I was chuffed to bits to be asked to exhibit with some amazing ceramics work and the whole exhibition looks fab.

Saturday, 5 September 2009

Made in America

It arrived in the nick of time as it was held up in customs till the very last minute. However in the Gallery’s true tradition the Exhibition "Made in America" was mounted and launched on time.

The Gallery at Bevere takes pride in the imaginative programming of its monthly exhibitions and the hope that throughout the year our visitors will see new ceramicists and those they have not seen for some time. September is the month when we try to organize a special show including makers of exceptional interest and quality.

The American ceramic scene is one that has interested us for some time and we are delighted to be able to show the work of three New England potters – one from Connecticut and two from Massachusetts - who have not exhibited in the UK before.

Stuart Dicken the Gallery’s Ceramic Curator says

"The three potters were selected after discussion with Thomas Hoadley and Sam Taylor - they are part of the wider community of New England potters and I know that they have a high regard for each other’s work.

Hayne Bayless's work is hand built stoneware or porcelain, mainly reduction-fired, using slab techniques and extruded elements, some with added handles and stems of metal or hand-carved hardwood.

Sam Taylor makes wood fired stoneware pottery. All his pottery is made on a Leach or treadle style wheel. He likes to throw pots on the wheel and then alter them, using a knife to cut facets or a paddle to change the form. He loves to decorate or paint on the pottery too.

The work sent by Hayne Bayless is very but it is a significant contrast to the work of Thomas Hoadley – He was

selected as his work is very vibrant and immediately attractive.

We see Thomas Hoadley's work as the centrepiece of this show - it is wonderfully crafted and these opulent vessels are going to interest serious collectors. “

Thursday, 3 September 2009

Pot of the Month September 2009

Ceramic Curator's Choice

Organic Blue Bowl


Aase Haugaard is a Danish potter of some eminence. Her work is recognisably Scandinavian – classical yet organic shapes – ceramic sculptures as Eric Meistrup the Art Critic described them. This pot is particularly impressive. Its shape suggests the capacity to grow – to change even as we stand and admire.

This is a vessel that truly needs its own space. It has real presence and has within it the roots of the ancient potter and the sensibilities of the contemporary artist.