Margaret Gardiner

Margaret works with light, smooth clay, either porcelain or white stoneware and combines this with the revealing process of vapour glazing. Her work has always had its roots in function and domestic ware.

Victorian architecture, Greek pots, and the sea are influences for her work. She particularly wants to convey the joy she feels when snorkelling. She delights in the colours and patterns of coral and sea creatures. She takes note of patterns when she travels whenever possible.

Margaret makes a range of finely thrown bowls, large centrepiece dishes, all sizes of jugs and vases, and a wide range of drinking vessels. She works mainly in porcelain, thrown on the wheel, slab built, extruded and slip-cast.

Once she has designed the forms, she uses them as a palette for textural patterns. Textures of lace, peacock feathers, shells and shiny things are often imprinted into her ceramics. She then chooses how to place them in the kiln for emphasis. The random element at this stage is very important to Margaret and the results are a constant motivator.

The work is vapour-glazed with both salt and soda at 1300°C in a gas kiln, then fumed with stannous chloride to create random areas of lustrous iridescence.