Contemporary Art, Ceramics, Sculpture, Gifts
Informed by the fresh blues and gnarly textures of Dorset’s ancient Jurassic Coast, artist Cathy Seddon (B.A., M.A., B.Ed) hand sculpts small batch wonky pottery in her back garden studio under the name Sandpiper Art Studios.
“My ceramics are thrown on a potter’s wheel or hand built, one at a time. Each pot is completely unique, often retaining evidence of the maker – a fingerprint, smear or impression of materials – frozen in time; mirroring the way the ancient fossils are retained in the rocks of the Jurassic Coast.
Abstract Expresssionist Paintings by Catherine Seddon
The name Sandpiper Art Studios was inspired by the birds of the RSPB centre in Arne and it is this Dorset seaside on the Jurassic Coast that influences my ceramics. I love walking from Lulworth Cove to Lyme Regis, passing through the ages, collecting fossils and pebbles, discarded glass and flowers and returning with pockets bulging. Many of my ceramic pieces contain cultural references linking them to this archaic coast in the form of crumbling fossil rock from the black cliffs of Seatown and beach glass combed from the shores of Durdle Door, Lulworth and Charmouth.
The fossils and artefacts that I forage from the rockpools are released from the soft cliffs via landslides whilst the pots that I make are formed through the shaping of fresh mud from the earth. There is a symbiosis occurring where I use clay dug from the land to create new vessels containing fossils and artefacts from the past that go on to live new lives in your homes, sometimes evoking ancient symbolism and mirroring the continuum witnessed in these Jurassic cliffs.
My hand thrown, hand built and hand painted vessels also investigate the undulations of the sea, as if the vessels themselves have been submerged, then tossed this way and that by the currents over time, like flotsam and jetsam, becoming reshaped and textured by the barnacles and objects that they encounter. I combine these undulations and the fusion of clay with the reclaimed objects from my pockets – glass, pebbles, fossils and all aspects of nature from the beaches of Dorset.
There is a layered depth to the glazes, which appear as abstract representations of the movement of the waves against the rocks, the graunch of the foam as the sea sucks back the pebbles on the foreshore and the myriad colours found within the rockpools. I use a wide variety of glazes in the same manner that I paint abstract paintings on canvas; to recreate the beauty found within the rockpools; the reds, greens and browns of stones, shells and sea creatures, the blues of the sky, the rough textures of barnacles and the depth of the fresh blue water. Every brush stroke is considered and placed, just so, in an attempt to bring the seaside into your home.
So… if you look at one of my pots and are reminded of the seaside, I’ll consider myself successful!”
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