THE POTTERS' GALLERY

 

ORIEL Y CROCHENWYR

Linda Caswell

 

My working methods are quite different from those used by most other potters and produce highly individual ceramic pieces. I work in porcelain, introducing colour into the clay itself to produce decorative agateware: a traditional technique used in a new way. I enjoy exploring the nature of the porcelain I am currently using, which is translucent and very white. This means that I can create very clear colours and can work with thin sheets of clay.

Basically, I colour some of the porcelain using stains and oxides, and then incorporate this coloured clay into the white body to produce the patterns that I want. I cut a slice from the block of patterned clay and roll it carefully before moulding it to form my vessel. I glaze the rims using a bronze-gold glaze, applied to the dry pot, before firing in an electric kiln. After firing I wet-sand the resultant work to achieve a satin smooth finish, which has a pleasing tactile quality. Because my work is thin the pots have to be supported in the kiln using a bed of silica sand for each one. Even so, the stresses of the firing can alter the shape and introduce another element of surprise on opening the kiln.

I enjoy the mixture of part control and part serendipity of this making method: I control what colours I use, what proportions, the patterning – and then the random element comes in and every pot will be individual.

 

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Email Linda Caswell

Tel. 01766 540237