I work as a freelance archaeological ceramic specialist, bringing my long career as a professional potter to bear on archaeological and anthropological projects, where an understanding of pottery making is essential.
My hand-built pots are inspired by the numerous, beautiful and ingenious pots that I have been lucky enough to handle during my various research trips across Europe.
All of my pots are unique: no two are planned to be the same. They are all intended to have a contemporary ‘twist’ about them that offers up a background story (biography) of the pot. This back story comes with the pot in the form of a beautiful artisan leaflet that is signed, dated and stamped with the imprint of my potters mark, giving the pot a provenance for the future. All pots are stamped with my potter’s mark.
My pots are made using the traditional techniques of prehistoric and indigenous potters. Each one is hand-built by either; pinching, coiling, slab building, and the dying technique of using a paddle and anvil. I do not use formers as I believe this negates some of the skill of hand-building. A pot can take anything from a few days to several weeks to make depending on size and complexity.
In prehistory, clay was a material that offered the opportunity to meet the most fundamental needs in the form of cooking pots, toys, clay ovens, spindle whorls, etc., or express personal identity. Clay was used to make extraordinarily complex, ornate and ingenious pots and ornaments for the highest elites of society and the simplest burial goods in the graves of ordinary folk.
In fact it could be said that in many places and for many parts of prehistory people were living in a ‘World of Clay’; pots represented cutting edge technology that allowed many new developments across society. I am fascinated by the nature of skill in the Neolithic, Bronze Age, and Early Iron Age across Europe, and what it may have meant to be a ‘maker’ of things in later prehistory.