Friday 24 November 2023

British Ceramics Biennial - Award : two installations

British Ceramics Biennial - Award : two installations

These two installations were in the garden of All Saints church

Elspeth Owen, Beyond Repair

As an 85-year old artist Owen is considering what to do with the leftovers of a working life. What may be precious to her may ultimately end up discarded.

Her site-specific installation addresses the fragility of clay and our desire to mend it when it breaks. She presents a line of small hand-formed bowls fired at low temperature. They sit on a bed of ceramic shards collected via a public appeal asking for discarded clay fragments and their accompanying stories. These have arrived from all over the world.

After the Biennial Owen will crush the fragments further and add them to the clay-dust paths around her workshop.

In Stoke during its ceramic producing haydey, these piles of broken, discarded ceramics were called shoredruck

Carrie Reichardt, Mad in Stoke

A 1970 Ford Zodiac car covered in mosaic tiles and ceramic plates. It is inspired by Stoke-on-Trent's rich and radical nightlife history with a particular focus on Shelley's nightclub in Longton, home to superstar DJ Sasha.

The bone china dinner plates and ecstasty pot lids were produced by Duchess China 1888 Ltd. The car interior continues the nostalgia trip as a video by Darren Washington plays personal interviews with those there at the time, recounting cherished memories of havin' it large.

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