Educator – participation ahead of the curve

How is the making of a new page for the website worthy of a blog post? Well, because I’d be lying if I said it didn’t surprise me how straightforward it was.  The complexity of the ways in which I have worked with clay in engagement projects has only now been given clarity.

Recently I have been investigating the latest research in Arts for Health and Participation art and it seems that I was ahead of the curve on this.  Measuring the value and impact of these engagements on a national scale has been outside of my scope but I am fortunate that this has been going on amongst key innovators and influencers in this field, in the guise of Clayground Collective and their directors Duncan Hooson and Julia Rowntree in 2012/13. 

My own work has my own maker’s mark on, if you will, working with groups in a more intimate way, in a kind of off-grid way but still in the public realm;  it’s focus remains the celebration of the power of making to transform lives.

The driving force behind this post, though, is really the capacity for distillation:  to write one page that distills a huge breadth and depth of work and maintains an overview has been a small revelation to me, and worthy of sharing.

Take a look at the new page! https://www.sarahcorearts.com/about-2/educator/

 

Launch night at Hertford Castle, 5 April 2019

It was a great way to start the weekend!  I was given a platform to speak about my work as part of the Hertford Arts Trail 2019 launch night at Hertford Castle. The audience were a sea of new faces to me so very unlike the teaching experience of more recent years (I am also remembering presenting to large delegations of surgeons in a previous working life!). It was a warm welcome and I really enjoyed the experience. Thank you Hertford Council and Courtyard Arts for the opportunity!

Opening night at Nude or Fully Clothed

It was a great to meet so many people at the Nude Tin Gallery on Friday night. The opening was a great success with collectors and artists meeting and talking about their interests. Thanks very much to the Nude Tin Gallery for a wonderful opening and for these photos of the night. The show is open until 29 January. Please take a look at the Facebook events page for full opening hours .

https://m.facebook.com/events/1009819722539238/?event_time_id=1009819782539232&ref=m_notif&notif_t=page_insights_weekly_digest

Up Against It

This piece explores the complex relationship between feminine beauty, making, work and feminine power.  It works with a figure from my own mythology that emerged as an image in a dream. 

It presents an unconventional beauty pressing her breast against a brick wall as she reaches forwards in an exaggerated gesture.  Her boundary is only in front of her; there is no brick wall behind her. 

The body of the woman is a solid piece of clay:  the brick wall is built around her.  Surface decoration is with contrasting matt and gloss slips and glazes.  In particular, the white slip and pink glaze wash on her body accentuate the texture in her skin as they shrink and crack during firing.  Her ‘makeup and nails’ are coloured gloss glazes.

These materials all develop when fired to 1260°C.  She is an object that has emerged from my lived experience but, more widely, queries boundaries of work within which the feminine operates.  A solid form, raw, cracked and imperfect, fixed in a gesture that reaches forward.

Wisdom

My latest piece has been a long time in making.  The finishing of wisdom is, as one might expect, a slow process!  But in all seriousness, the qualities in this ancient moustachioed man really touches something about the nature of wisdom.

This piece explores the societal expectations that accompany traditions of knowledge and wisdom.

It presents the archetype of a single man, supporting his head with his dominant hand. The head and the mouth are hollow vessels, containing and expressing infinite knowledge. The moustache, in the form of a generous blue bow on an enlarged white glazed mouth, is a symbol of male societal traditions in beauty, age and rank.

The figure emerged through the ‘making first’ technique; taking a piece of clay and making without directing thought or expectation. Surface decoration is with contrasting slips and glazes and are fully developed at 1260°C. In particular, the gloss blue and white of the mouth and moustache speak to the large historical catalogue of blue and white ceramics.

A man made by a woman is a significant: it refers more widely to a movement towards healing and wholeness that is central to my practice.

Black Friday Sale!

It’s been a quiet day in the studio; woman’s hour spoke to me it seemed with a comment about beginning new work “how do I begin again?” Still, there was calm and happy progress and am delighted that the work is in the new Black Friday sale at vinterior. Head over to the collection for more: https://bit.ly/2RDvJGD

Doorstops: punctuation and the studio move

The move to the new studio feels more complete now I have a doorstop!  It feels like the great punctuation mark in the flow of my practice and moment to reflect on which step to take next.

There has now been a solid 9 months of making in the new space and the Open Studios was a great way to open up to the world and welcome it in. I am glad to say the ‘world’ visited!

Much of my making is directed by intuition and the last 9 months has been happy conversation between tableware and figurative sculpture.  I realise now on a personal level that the tableware has been a process of homemaking, literally moving in and finding function for the new space.  The result is a bold quality and function combined, which, as a thrower, is a subject I return to again and again. It has really worked well.  Now I feel more able to focus on the making of figurative work which is in many ways more demanding but much more rewarding for it.

Happy Saturday folks!