Ashley Howard is an award winning ceramic artist and dedicated teacher creating porcelain vessels informed by Far-Eastern and homespun pottery traditions. Ashley’s work draws from his interest in ritual vessels, the spaces they occupy and the ceremonies that surround them.
Primarily throwing his work on the wheel, while sometimes applying varying degrees of manipulation and altering, Ashley uses surface techniques he has developed over the years to decorate his work by drawing, brushing and printing with enamels. His unique approach to surface decoration is captured by Adrian Bland who writes ‘Howard himself has spoken of his early reticence with regard to decoration, his holding back from being a ‘potter that paints’ (Howard, 2018), and for some time his idiosyncratic mark making remained bound within the sketchbook. Such reticence was perhaps first confronted technically, with research into the right materials and processes, the right temperatures, to push the mark-making into the pot, so that the surface is not sitting on the form, but rather becomes integral to it, and the pot retains a ceramic integrity that somewhat refutes the notion of clay as canvas; ‘the glaze has pulled the marks right in’ (Howard, 2018)’
Initially studying at what is now known as the University for the Creative Arts, Rochester, Ashley has built a career combining teaching with making. Studying his Masters at the Royal College of Art in 2001, he has since published numerous articles on technical and aesthetic subjects.
“The motion, movement and rhythm of the potters wheel have always been an experiential influence on my making. This exhibition represents a stage in my continuing enquiring into the relationship between form and surface.” – Ashley Howard
Matthew Chambers is an internationally recognised ceramic artist creating mesmerising sculptures that draw the eye into the deepest depth of each piece.
Sue Hanna and Antonia Salmon are both renowned for their ceramic sculptures, their individual careers have lead their works to be displayed, and held in collections, across the UK and internationally. Together their pieces are both unfamiliar and comforting with strong shapes, smoke fired surfaces and deliciously smooth edges a running theme throughout this striking collection.