Materials:Stoneware; China clay and Devon ball clay
Method: Hand built; modelled and carved
Care: Dust lightly
This vessel is hand built and crafted using various clays by esteemed ceramicist Paul Philp in his home studio in Bath, UK. The time-consuming process of building by hand gives the artist control over the material to create its dramatic form. The darkened areas along the sharp, precise edges contrasts with the lighter cracks on the surface to create eclectic textures within the piece. Its graphic quality emphasises the unique shape of the vessel, demonstrating Philp’s distinct practice and masterly hand.
The distinctive tactile textures of the vessels result from repeated high temperature-firings. The initial form of the vessel is bisque fired to harden the material. Several layers of white slipare then applied and fired on several firings at around 1000°C. The piece is finished with a thin coat of china clay and wood ash, fired at whiteheat (1260°C).
The rough surface and colour palette of this vessel embody an antiquarian quality conveying Philp’s interest in ancient culture, oriental art, geology and the natural world.
About the Artist
Paul has been working with clay for over forty years and over that time has experimented with a variety of materials and techniques, some of which have never been tried before. This has resulted in equal measures of delight and frustration as some attempts work and others fail. It’s not an easy task especially as each of his pieces face, what he calls an “unknown future”, as various “breakdowns” (unpredictable cracks and fissures) occur as they are fired multiple times in the kiln. However, this is all part of Paul Philp’s unique creative process. It’s very important to him that each of his pieces develop into something that have their own individual character and identity. He wants them to have a life beyond him and soon after he starts to create them, they should continue on a journey of their own. We are attracted to this idea and hope that as owners and inheritors of his pieces that they will continue their journey in our own homes and beyond.