How many of you can name one, or even two ceramists? Bonus points if they were born within the last half-century, and gold stars if they are female. As interest in ceramic-based art rises, here’s a run-down of the ladies you should know about.
Marlene Steyn, @marlenehettie
Marlene’s ceramic works are creepy and cute at the same time. Full of female nudity, she blends body parts and whole figures together to create strange, surreal characters that beguile from every angle.
Lena Kassicieh, @lena.kassicieh
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It’s truly meaningful to me to be among so many talented creative minds at this year’s @ammandesignweek. Never thought I’d be here but here I am! ⛅️ #ammandesignweek2019 #adw2019 #worlddesignweeks #ammanjordan #beamman #designworldwide #ceramicas #ceramicdesign #ammandesignweek
Bright and colourful, Lena Kassicieh’s ceramic pieces are full of colour, pattern and personality. Her work is a commentary on the messiness of everyday life, but we can’t help but think that through Lena’s eyes, that mess is beautiful.
Phoebe Cummings, @phoebe_cummings
Phoebe Cummings has won countless awards for her ceramics-based work, and we can certainly see why. Delicate and other-worldly, her pieces turn the heaviness of clay into works of art that are light and fragile.
Paloma Proudfoot, @palomaproudfoot
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Lindsey and I have made some gold lustre tooth charm bracelets (22 carat gold ????) as editions to accompany the show, available to buy with or without its own personal finger hook too – please dm @hannahbarrygallery if you’re interested in purchasing and would like more details!
As well as art, Paloma Proudfoot makes jewellery too, as can be seen here hanging from these green ceramic fingers at a recent exhibition at Hannah Barry. Paloma’s work is freaky in the best way possible, and we’re totally here for it.
Lindsey Mendick, @lindseymendick
Lindsey Mendick’s work is fun, and in your face. Her work is personal, having previously dedicated an entire show with effigies for failed relationships. We all love a bit of passionate art, and boy-trouble is something we can all relate to.
Clementine Keith-Roach @clementinekeithroach
Taking what we initially think of traditional ceramics and then subverting it, Clementine Keith-Roach places with our stereotypical ideas about clay-based art. Her work consists of vases and furniture, which is then adorned with a series of clay hands. Talk about surreal!
Annie Attridge, @annieattridge
Annie Attridge’s work depicts erotic desires, fantasies, masked characters and voluptuous female bodies. We love the girl-power vibe to her work, and the way in which it reminds us of classical sculpture.
Sally Hacket, @salhack
If you look through Sally Hacket’s Instagram feed, you’ll see lots of ceramic pieces depicting a nude figure stabbing their partner in bed. And while it should be gruesome, it isn’t. Somehow she manages to poke fun at the difficulties of modern life and modern relationships, and make them light, and we applaud her for it.
Hannah Regel, @hannahregel
Hannah Regel’s work is poetic, which makes sense, because she is a poet as well as an artist too. From tentacles embracing flowers to female legs decapitated from their bodies, the eeriness to her work has us completely intrigued.
Victoria Adam, @vics.adam
The assuming simplicity of Victoria Adam’s work is what draws us in. incorporating everyday, fragile objects like shells, flowers and plants, she adds another layer to her ceramics-based works.
Nessma Djouhri, @lutum.ceramics
Nessma Djouhri’s works incorporate moving figures on plates, vases and mugs. Full of pattern and personality, they are pieces we all want on our dining room tables.
Alicia Reyes McNamara, @aliciossa
Alicia Reyes McNamara’s characters look like they landed on Earth from out of space. Long-limbed, blue and peculiar, they are endearing too, the kind of art you want to be best friends with.
Urara Tsuchiya, @u.tsuchiya
Commenting on the realities of being a young person in 2019, Urara Tsuchiya’s work shows the inside’s of a millennial’s kitchen fridge, remnants of a one-night stand and the complexities of modern relationships. Her honesty and realness is something we can all get behind.
Jessie Makinson, @jessie_makinson
A painter as well as a ceramist, Jessie Makinson merges paint and clay to make monumental, transfixing pieces. Creating, colourful scenes, her ceramic-based works allows the viewer a 360 degree view inside her world.
Carolinda Tolstoy, @carolinatolstoy
working across canvas, palaces and walls, ceramics are just one of Carolinda Tolstoy’s many talents. Inspired by Persian miniatures, the Levant and the Ottoman Empire, her pieces remind us of another, opulent world, one we’d all like a first class ticket to ASAP!
Claudia Clare, @claudiaceramics
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'Princess Hymen,' one of the five , 2 metre high, pots in 'Shattered,' 2007. 'Shattered was completed in 2007, period of research and experiment, 2004-5, making the large pots 2006-7. 'Shattered,' was my response to 25 years of listening to women's accounts of #survivingsexualviolence and the often repeated words, 'I was shattered. Now I'm piecing myself slowly back together.' 'Princess Hymen,' was made in response to numerous women describing the pressures of living in a virginity culture. by 'virginity culture,' I mean one that uses the viriginity of women and girls – and it is ONLY EVER women and girls – to represent and communicate the so called #honour of the nation state, the family or the community. This affects all women raised as Catholic girls, all women raised as Muslim girls, all women of any faith and none living in Iran – and other Muslim majority countries, Mormons in the USA, and assorted weird religious and political cults the world over – and please don't get me started on pageant princesses. If I've left you out – notably Orthdox Christians and Jews – do feel free to add your story. I listened to accounts of #virginitytesting , #hymenoplasty #hymenreconstruction and #femalegenitalmutilation , #fgm , and marraiage bed-sheet displays. All these accounts came from women living full or part time in London, UK. 'Shattered' is now in storage in my studio awaiting the welcome attention of a sensible, courageous, feminist curator or collecor. Do get in touch! #virginity #virginityisasocialconstruct #feminism #feministart #feministceramics #brokenpots #sexualviolence #survivors #politicalpots #politicalart #potterpainter #claudiaclare #kintsugi #slipwarepottery #slippainting #gendercritical #endfgm #enddemand #endsexualviolence #endviolenceagainstwomen
We normally think of ceramics as small, petite objects, ones that can easily be placed on top of a table, but that’s not what Claudia Clare thinks. Creating oversized and beautiful vases, Claudia Clare’s work comments on issues affecting women, politics and 21st century life.
Christie Brown, @xiebrownceramics
Christie Brown’s figurative works are inspired by the way museum collections are formed. Her ceramics also comment on mythology, as well as the symbolism associated with clay, wax, bronze and plaster.
Nadia Gohar, @nadia_gohar
Making use of concrete to recreate the feeling of clay, Nadia Gohar’s work is inspired by her Egyptian heritage, everyday objects, and tradition. Often incorporating objects like a butterfly’s wing, her work adds a level of fragility to a medium that is often hard and dense.
Anne Ryan, @anne_ryan_painter
Predominantly a painter, Anne Ryan also transfers her art off of the canvas and onto ceramics. Her work is interested in how painting can shed light on new worlds, something that she has transferred into her ceramic work too.
Aliyah Hussain, @aliyah.a.hussain
Aliyah Hussain’s work is concerned with feminist science fiction and co-sharing domestic and social environments. She works with abstract forms to construct narratives that explore different modes of communication and miscommunication.
Text Lizzy Vartanian