Ceramics talent handpicked for festival
Folk-lore inspired ornaments based on traditional Staffordshire figurines are among the work of Staffordshire University students and graduates handpicked to feature in the Great Northern Contemporary Craft Fair.
Several current students and graduates from the University’s MA Ceramic Design and BA (Hons) 3D Design: Ceramics courses have been specially selected to exhibit their work at the Manchester event which showcases contemporary craft from over 175 designer-makers across a range of mediums from jewellery to furniture.
Potteries-born Jasmine Simpson, 22, was inspired by the rich ceramics heritage of the region. Her work draws from folk tales such as Aesops fables and comprises animals including a wolf, bird and lion.
“I have a lot of fascination with nature and try to capture the energy of animals in my work.” explained Jasmine.
“Growing up in Staffordshire and studying at the University has definitely influenced me – these pieces were inspired by traditional Beswick and Wedgwood ceramic ware.”
Visitors to GNCCF 2015 can buy or commission work directly from the makers, learning about the process, inspiration, materials and stories behind the work.
Jasmine said: “The fair is a great opportunity to network and meet other artists as well as promote myself to the public. It’s a bit nerve-racking but I can’t wait.”
Since graduating from the BA course last year Jasmine has been working as a freelance artist, based in studios at Middleport Pottery, and says studying at the University was the ideal platform to kick-start her career.
“I definitely wouldn’t be doing this if it wasn’t for the course at Staffs. You get lots of hands on experience and the University has really good links with the industry.”
Fellow graduates Alex Allday, Eva Radulova and Gemma Louise Taylor have also been chosen to take part in the fair, in the emerging maker section, whilst Camila Perez and Yuka Kikumoto have been selected for the main body of the show.
Professor of Ceramic Design, Dave Sanderson said:
“To have such an exposure at the prestigious Great Northern Contemporary Crafts Fair of young designers from Staffordshire University, is a compliment to our educational provision in ceramic design.
“Even more satisfying is that Gemma, Camila and Yuka are currently postgraduate students, and not scheduled to graduate until 2016."
GNCCF 2015 runs from 9-11 October at Old Granada Studios, Manchester.
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