Wednesday, November 23, 2011


Sake and Sushi set. Sake flute: $89, cup: $21, plate: $22

A friend sent me this Shapeways link which is quite makes me real (actual as opposed to virtual) studio ceramics going to become totally anachronistic, a feature of past history, perhaps like lace-making?
The Shapeways site is completely interactive in that one can design one's own item within the limitations of their templates and then have it made 'without getting one's hands dirty'....and one assumes the respondent would feel truly creative!

'Create cups and tumblers from scratch without getting your hands covered in clay. Design your one of a kind set using our easy Creator tool and get it made in food-safe 3D printed ceramic. Painting pottery is so 1999. 3D printing pottery...welcome to the future.'

It is certainly a new other kind of world!

Any thoughts on this?

Thursday, November 17, 2011


'Come, let us have some tea and continue to talk about happy things.'
Chaim Potok

This is my tea set for a themed 'tea' exhibition to be held very soon at
Kim Sacks Gallery in Johannesburg


Today Albie, my partner, and Adonis, my assistant, installed this panel which was a commission for a client - it was to be the feature piece in the most beautiful apartment in all of Cape Town. The challenge was to use colours that resonated gently with the furniture and accessories and at the same time using iconography and content that was fresh and a little whimsical. The panel should be titled 'Edward Lear meets T.S.Eliot' - they were my combined inspirations!

Wednesday, November 16, 2011


Yang Jiechang, The skull.

My son who is a digital animator specialising in the human body drew my attention to the ceramic work of Yang Jiechang. I found the pieces quite beautiful and not ostentatious like Damien Hirst's diamond skull.

All pieces are produced in Jingdezhen kilns, which are renowned for some of the highest quality ceramics in China, then hand painted with traditional flower motifs.
By combining Chinese master crafts, like ceramics, with skulls and bones, inspired from vanitas iconography in Western art, Yang Jiechang creates a strong yet poetic artwork questioning the meaning of life and the importance of memory in contemporary society.
Each artwork comes in a custom box signed by the artist with a certificate of authenticity.

jiechangYang Jiechang. b. 1956 Guangdong Province, China. Lives in Heidelberg, Germany, and Paris, France. Yang Jiechang (Guangdong 1956) is one of the best known overseas Chinese painters. The artist studied calligraphy and traditional painting and borrows on those skills to create contemporary works, like ink-dripped characters, maps and traditional landscape images with a modern feel. He also has created collages, installations and performance art. He studied in Guangzhou Academy of Fine Arts from 1978 to 1982. He lives and works in Paris and Heidelberg, Germany since 1988.

For more info check out Galerie Conrads.

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Grayson Perry Decries Portsmouth Plans to Cut Crafts - ArtLyst

Grayson Perry Decries Portsmouth Plans to Cut Crafts - ArtLyst

Bloomsbury and the Omega Workshops

In the spirit of portraiture on plates I have recently been commissioned to paint some famous characters onto plates. The image here features my versions of Roger Fry and Clive Bell

Fry(1866 - 1934) was an English artist and art scholar, a curator for the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York (1906–10) and the Slade Professor of Art at Cambridge (1933). He coined the term “post-Impressionism” and introduced England to its principal artists through two London exhibitions( 1910-1912); he worked with Clive Bell to develop a new theory of art—formalism—to justify post-Impressionism (1913–14); and most lastingly he founded and ran the Omega Workshops (1913–19), whose decorative crafts helped heal England’s interior design of the “eczematous eruption” of Victorian ornament.

Fry was an intimate of the Bloomsbury circle from at least 1911 when he fell in love with Vanessa Bell during a tour of Turkey. Bell—Woolf’s older sister—was already married, and Fry had just admitted his wife of fifteen years to a mental hospital, but the Bloomsbury prejudice against monogamy encouraged their romance, which was genuine and lasting even if the affair was short. In 1926 longing for the domestic comforts of married life, Fry moved in with Helen Anrep, with whom he would remain until his death eight years later.

Monday, November 14, 2011


Ceramic piece by John Higgins

John Higgins constructing a slab vessel

Ralph Johnson - Chairperson of Ceramics SA - holding up John's thrown plate

John throwing a plate

The slabbed pot is almost complete...

John Higgins, well-known British potter, presented a wonderful workshop to members of Ceramics South Africa in Durbanville this past Saturday. SO inspiring to watch the ease with which a maker of probably 40 years experience glides through the techniques and skills. He started the day with a slide presentation of his work describing in detail his roots and his influences...what a pleasure and a privilege to be one of the participants.

Sunday, November 13, 2011


'Colour in Glazes' - This wonderful new book by Linda Bloomfield is now out - I am delighted to have my beakers featured on the cover. Check out the preview on the best seller Ceramic Arts Bookstore page.

Friday, November 11, 2011


Opening this Sunday 13th Nov 2011 at 11.30 am - Ceramics SA (Western Cape)
Regional Exhibition.
The Great Cellar at Alphen Hotel, Alphen Drive, Constantia, Cape Town
Opening speaker - British potter John Higgins.
Weekdays 9 - 5
Saturday 9 - 1

Wednesday, November 9, 2011


Opening on Wed 9 November at 6pm. This is a mixed media exhibition featuring all the artists who have been associated with the curator, Sue Greenberg, over the past 29 years. To be opened by Brendon Bell, Director of the Tatham Gallery, Pietermaritzburg. Artisan Gallery, 344 Florida Road, Morningside , Durban . Tel 031 312 4364