I am of Russian background and Russian Folk Art from early childhood has had an unconscious influence. No wonder I have a passion for colour. I fell in love with clay when I was 18, doing a ceramic A’level at college, and have always dreamt of being able to take it further. Surface decoration on clay, playing with layering glazes, slips, under glazes and firing a vessel several times to bring out variations of colour have become integral to my ceramic work. I use a variety of techniques, although hand built pieces or vessels built on moulds are my preferred method of construction.
My work is often textured with an introduction of oxides as an under layer to the glazes producing busy curlicues, and brash colours for a strong visual impact. Be it images of fantastical birds, fish, berries, turnips, or garishly painted wooden spoon – I want them to bring vibrancy and sheer exuberance to the pieces I make. Russian craftsmen expressed folk tale motifs drawing on familiar images and characters through every different medium; wood, lace, textile, metal, ceramic….and their use of colour often had symbolic meaning echoing Orthodox icon painting. Later the Russian suprematist artists like Malevich had their own version of the folkloric culture, themes, and colours. I also attempt to have a contemporary take on the energy and joie de vivre this tradition evokes.
Last year, I was very lucky to be tutored by Robert Cooper and Ruth Franklin who opened up, encouraged, imparted knowledge and challenged me along my ceramic journey at City Lit, London, and to them I truly grateful. I work in stoneware clay, as well as black smooth and textured clay to conjure the Russian ‘Palech’ black lacquer wares. Mostly I make one off, functional and decorative pieces or unique ‘families’ of pieces.
Address: Cliff Cottage, 12 Ramshill, Petersfield, GU31 4AP
Mobile Telephone Number: 07837 987 675
Services: Commission accepted.
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