PDP Subject

The concepts and research that I undertook in my work went from mapping of journeys, liminality, movement and sculpture. My current work relates to colour and exploration of forms, natural formations that don’t look manmade, more like impossible objects. The materiality and structure of the work creates a sensorial colour theory. Through the presentation process my work starts to connect more to the architecture it’s in and the forms that could be futuristic/modern buildings.

From the very start of my subject research I had been interested in movement of objects – making a journey and allowing the work to take us on that journey. This was produced through GIF videos of the movement of my photography and the subtle changes of adding/subtracting work from the frame.

My research was synthesized into ideas by producing very simple forms I explored the shapes for my work through the use of the extruder – repeating these maquette shapes through hand-building them in big scale sculptures. My work and the presentation has always been a response to an environment from the end of level 5 up to where my work is now as an installation of colour theory, visual play and sensorial textures of ceramics. My work lies within a liminal space between nature and the industrial.

Through my making stage and the start of deciding on my presentation I started to explore artists who mainly worked on the floor, Barry Flanagan, Betty Woodman, Corrina Thornton Matt Wedel, and most importantly Anne Hardy – creating a surreal environment. The influence of spare materials that Flanagan, Thornton and Hardy used was very experimental in my work and I’ve moved away from it as I come to a professional finished body of work, using one block of colour to absorb and project the colour applied on my works.

Once I was indulged in my skills and making process of coiling my last three big scale works, I needed to find practical ways of working with the weight of the work for firings, deciding on the colour theory throughout my research for colours meanings and experiencing, influenced by the ‘colourscape lab’ with Eloise Govier and my own relationship to the visual effect of colour. The difficulty of high firing the works with such powdery fragile surfaces on such huge works was very difficult. With the generous help of Matt we lifted the work from different surfaces such as tables trolleys and kiln shelves successfully, otherwise I re-sprayed the work with a small spray gun whilst it was in the kiln. I didn’t know how I’d feel about the work or how it would be placed once it came out the other end, not until it was at a finish ready to go into the show.

My intention with the work is to create excitement, confusion, direction and movement to viewers, seeing a ‘fun’ scene of absurdity.

I hope to extend my research of colour in future projects, my exhibition of work has just opened the gateway for me to further my knowledge and challenge my understandings within and outside of the practice of ceramics, from starting the year with the study of signs and signifiers. I feel colour has always been an underlying topic that I intend to explore further, from shapes and forms to the application of visual harmony.


Field PDP, Exhibition set-up and colour play

Even before the start of the Field module I had started to plan my summer show exhibition all based on the floor, some in different parts of the building as seen in my sketchbook– following visitors as they move through the building. This changed through my research of visiting certain exhibitions such as Alexander Calder – for his moving and floating forms, coloured shapes in harmony with each other – all connected through the material of metal. Anne Hardy for her sensorial environment full of colour sound, objects. These experiences and ideas of forms, colours, materials and environments were transformed into material experiments in my studio work. Once the scale of my work had increased I moved away from the extra materials into solely ceramic.

The one time I was able to practice the set-up of my work was in the photography studio, the colour play that I experienced within the photography put colours together in the ceramic and the background – red and purple ceramic together with a blue background – the red ceramic and blue background create the purple in the next piece of ceramic. It has very much become about the visual aesthetics of pure colour and overlapping colours – how two separate objects can create new colours to the human eye, along with the blue background being as big a part of the composition as the pieces of work set out over it.

There are hidden colours that you can’t find/see unless you move around the works- move around the works to see the different combinations and new colours that are created by your own sight and imagination rather than whats really there.

Stage 1

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At the start of the week I found it really hard to set out my work whilst the environment around me was constantly transforming with no permanence, I felt I wasn’t able to finalise my work until others had done so to their own space. The space felt messy and cramped, I found it difficult approaching the blue sheet for my works presentation because my work is about movement journey so people would be walking through the work, observing the colours and textures together, rather than having boundaries.

The sheet of paper became crumpled after applying it to the wall with tape – the trouble of plug sockets surrounding the work – distraction.

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Charles and Sarah suggested having the paper landscape so the work can be surrounded by blue. This example led to MDF and a very lucky find of the same coloured paint as the blue sheet.

Stage 2

thumb_IMG_0132_1024 thumb_IMG_0133_1024thumb_IMG_3899_1024 My plan of work with MDF and paper. The use of MDF and paper feels finalised and more professional than using random materials like I had been in my past experimentations of presentations – finding ways to connect the different works. Now the different colours connect up to each other rather than physical materials.

Stage 3

I had help from ingrid with reshaping the composition. The positioning of objects were lost and found in the movements we made around the body of work. lost in another works same colour – found in another objects colour or from the blue background. I had to make sure that there was a start and a finish – a direction for viewers eyes to follow round.


Stage 4

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The presence of my work in the exhibition space is very elusive next to works such as Ross Giles body of work that is very clearly ceramic teapots decomposing as you look further town the table, against my big blocks of mass sculptures with unusual powdery looking surface and striking colours. It is two opposite spectrums of the ceramic ability next to each other.


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Overall it’s very difficult to know whether I’m truly happy with the set-up as there’s no time to reconsider certain decisions, I/We need to accept it and continue building a good quality show. Bearing in mind this is the first time I was able to set out my big scale work other than in the photo studio, therefore I felt comfort in the blue from the photography that’s why I repeated the same actions.


Photography Studio

Black Background made the pieces look like they’re floating, didn’t give the work the feeling I wanted – they stood out too much, I want the background to play as big’a’roll as the ceramics work in the final shot.

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thumb_IMG_0148_1024  thumb_IMG_0144_1024 copy   My work in front of Rob Pepperolls Paintings – questioning the scientific reasons for them to be visually aesthetic.


Blue Background – Chosen for degree show, this background compliments my work – its universal throughout all my work it holds the colours and form together to all become one together.

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Orange Background – At the time I really disliked the outcomes of my photography. The camera didn’t capture the right focus and the backgrounds didn’t play much of a role, the colours weren’t captured realistically.










Colourscape lab- Eloise govier

Eloise Govier held a colourscape lab workshop in the Arnolfini Bristol. She is currently studying Sensory Anthropology and is a working artist with an interest in participatory arts. John Haywood, a lecturer at middlesex university, spoke to us about his years of research within colour.  Such as the iphone application Colour ground, it’s function is to document the colour palette of your surrounding environment such as pigments from buildings, picking up how we see colour within communities and a way to respond to urban environments. My own colour palette is below, one being in Cardiff Urban taphouse and the other my bedroom.



Another project called Colouredge paint range representing the south Pennine Edge capturing the richly diverse and intense hues of both built and natural environments;the townscape, moorland and valleys.

The workshop followed up from my evening of colour research very well as a lot of studies and artists from the BBC programme we’re mentioned in the workshop such as Yves Klein. Within the group that were picked there was sculpture, print, textiles, painters, and anthropologists. Each of us had a very interesting perspective of how we see and think of colour.

We looked at companies colour palettes and the names they give particular colours due to what we may link that colour to, object/environment/thought. At what point do we feel we own a colour? Colours that could possibly be found within nature (as the primary influence). The most profound story was about communities that reacquaint themselves with their land by applying the earths mud to their skin to create a connection of protection rather than harm to nature.


colourscape mine

The colour palettes Eloise asked us to fill out were as follows; colour of your favourite place, colour of you, colour of your favourite person, colour of the room, colour of Eloise

My way of picking the colours were purely visual, whereas others picked their colours by connecting their feelings of comfort with warm red or calm with green – connecting to nature. A way that I haven’t thought of colour by how I apply it to my degree show pieces. The workshop has had a positive impact on my way of thinking about colour – seen in my final centrepiece work with red body, purple outline and orange interior. These colours were picked through feelings of excitement and visual harmony in the balance between the overlapping colours seen in my photography blog post.


Colour is nature, art is nature and we take on the practice to understand our environment our reason for living our way of life as humans and the different activities we take part in for survival and to stretch our mental capacity

thumb_IMG_3805_1024thumb_IMG_3807_1024thumb_IMG_3808_1024thumb_IMG_3814_1024thumb_IMG_3820_1024thumb_IMG_0115_1024 thumb_IMG_0119_1024 surface of the trolley after the spray booth.

Spray booth and kiln firings

In the end I decided to go for complimentary colours starting off with the easiest form and ending with the hardest. I spray around 30-40 layers on the work then with great difficulty try to transport it into the kiln, involving kiln props as rollers under the kiln shelf and a basic knife to move the work over.thumb_IMG_0089_1024 thumb_IMG_0092_1024 Always having a beautiful texture on the base holding the work.

thumb_IMG_0100_1024 thumb_IMG_0103_1024 thumb_IMG_0105_1024 thumb_IMG_0107_1024Dealing with problems such as fingerprints was fixed by a small spray gun once the work had been put into the kiln.

thumb_IMG_0108_1024 thumb_IMG_0111_1024Now to decide the colour of the last, big central piece of work.

Colour Theory

Tomorrow is the day I start spraying colour onto my final big scale pieces and i’m in need to understand the colours I’m using a little bit more rather than depending on spontaneity and taste to create new work on top of another.


I’m starting to consider the colour conversations that occur from current and post influences of mine. Things that are purely visually satisfying as well as mentally satisfying to what colours we connect to certain shapes or memories.

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I’m interested in the space in-between colours – the boundary of red and blue making purple – connections of how colours are originated in the first place. Placing colour on object in the same way colour places ‘things’. We live within a kaleidoscopic world of colour.

I chose not to feature any green apart from very light mint greens in my work as I feel that it is too relatable to nature – i’d rather my work be surreal than natural. By watching programmes about colour I picked up some interesting understandings – blue transports us to other places, something we desire. Same feeling we may get when we look up into the sky when it is a shade of blue.

Through my work I see a marriage of colour and form, this colour changes the perception of what something is. The colour blue is all around us in nature but out of touch, this blue captures our imaginations, desire for the new world beyond our own, blue holds strange and exotic realms. It’s as though new colours come out of the blue, new life of fresh luscious colours (my work?).

A very obvious artist to refer to is Yves Klein for his captivation with the sky – a way to escape from the world around him, a way to create a deep and liberating colour that becomes an infinity of a utopia.

To have a colour to escape to, becoming lost in the distance between ourselves and the colour.

Cardiff M.a.d.e Aiden Myers talk

Although Aiden’s talk was around his paintings I found the conversation interesting connecting to the way I think about form and sculpture.

Highlights of the talk were; Allowing the forms and the media to breath through its direction of movement within weight, mass, space and energy. There is embodiment through making and representation. The combination of colours create tension and physical elements through limitation something emerges, this decisive process you see a harmony of layers, difference between purpose and aesthetic, producing layers and textures that aren’t humanly controlled.

There is a power of risk, bravery and exposure of the maker in these impossible creations. You are submersed through scale, repositioning and precision. You lose yourself within the question of time, at what point does the work create it’s own identity as well as an extension of your own being.