Wednesday, 1 October 2014


The history of ceramics is one inextricably linked to functional use as is evidenced by archaeological finds dating back several thousand years. However, tableware remains an important feature of the daily rituals of eating and drinking today and many will say that food is enhanced by the beauty of the pots on the table.  This month’s tableware feature is a reminder – as if we needed it - that there is as much character and inherent beauty in a well-crafted functional vessel as there is in so-called decorative ceramics. The September /October transition is often tricky and we have some delays in sending work – however the five makers who are part of this month’s feature clearly demonstrate the truth of the notion that ceramics is indeed clothes for food.
Two of the five have shown with us before. The oriental inspired work of Kaori Tatebayashi

  has always generated interest and her admirers will not be disappointed in the group that she has put together. It is recognisably Kaori’s work but she continues to develop her range and I particularly like her scalloped bowls.

 Kochevet (Kookie) Bendavid
has also shown here before - although some years ago – and I am delighted to be reminded of the grace and elegance that she brings to her bowls and dishes. Whilst they may be seen as ‘special occasion’ vessels, they will bring a luxuriant elegance to the most mundane of meals.

As for the three new exhibitors, they bring a diversity which we always look for in group features.

 Stuart Carey is making a name for himself with his finely crafted tableware and what appeals to me is the simplicity of design and the throwing skills which he demonstrates in every piece. His use of semi porcelain and subtle monochrome glazes enhances the appeal of these finely crafted pieces. Once again, it is the notion of the potter’s hand on every vessel that sets each piece apart. 

Louisa Taylor
is another new face at the gallery this month. In her own words she makes vessels for sharing and relaxed eating. We see here the notion of eating and ritual; ceramics which enhance such an important aspect of our daily lives.

 Sue Binns is well known to many but has not been at Bevere before. Her strongly decorated work will grace any table and once again provides a contrast to the more subtle decoration of Carey, Tatebayashi and Bendavid.

I hope that – like me - your will be stimulated by the work of five of the most stimulating makers of functional ware today.
If you have read the latest edition of Ceramic Review you will know that Christopher Taylor
is also due to exhibit with us from the 16 October. The article which I commend to you says much about Chris’s work and his approach which has developed since he undertook an MA at the RCA. I know that the coming together of the traditional with the contemporary is something of a cliché but Christopher Taylor clearly has brought them together in a way which makes his work so attractive to many – even those who say . . I don’t normally like this kind of work but . . . I have been an admirer of his pots since he was voted into first place in our Annual Graduate Show some three years ago. He has come some way since then and his work is much in demand. 

Stuart Dickens

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