CLAY AS A CANVAS
Folklore Inspired Cornish Ceramics
Cornish based potter Laura Lane, makes locally sourced, ethical, stoneware ceramics inspired by folklore with a contemporary twist. Laura is pleased to be showcasing her latest collection of work at Top Drawer Craft, 9-11th September.
“For hundreds of years we have used stories and imagination (and a little magic) to help us understand and explain the world around us. The art of storytelling is a craft in itself. Often when we see people talking, we observe the body language as much as we listen to what they actually saying. Many people ‘talk with their hands’. This as far as I am concerned is what makers do.”
Laura’s often playful and sometimes humorous illustrative style is a gentle nod to both historical and contemporary folklore. Her functional homewares and decorative wall plaques are often referred to as ‘warm and cozy’ with their washed out blue hues and white tin glaze, giving the work a smooth subtle appearance. The work is made using Cornish materials, giving it a real credibility and
sense of place before being fired using renewable energy in an electric kiln.
Living on an organic smallholding with her young family, the sense of sustainability, fair-trade and keeping things local are key elements in her working, as well as family life. The stoneware clay comes direct from an ancient pit in St Agnes just a few hundred yards from the sea, along with the some of the key glaze ingredients of china clay and tin which played such a vital role in Cornwall’s mining history.
The glaze recipes have been developed by Laura since she first started making pots and many recipes were lost in a devastating fire two years ago.
The work is hand thrown, brushed with the dark slip & then decorated using a sgraffito technique, before being dipped in a white tin glaze. The layers and brush marks that you can see represent the idea of storytelling being passed down through the generations, much akin to Chinese Whispers, some parts are brushed over and lost whilst other marks are clearly there for us all to see. The slate/blue colour is a reminder of the moors, skies and sea. All of these separate elements are pulled together with a pinch of fun using functional vessels as a canvas.