8 Jul - 9 Sep 2023
Wed – Sat, 10 am – 1 pm and 2 – 4 pm
‘A Part of Us’ explores two makers’ innate affinity with their environment, continuous and indivisible from the process and outcome of making. Vessels in clay and wood echo land and sea with traces and patterns real and mapped, evoking both the inner landscape of thought and the outer sensory experience of place. Both makers, of and from the region where they were born and bred, seek to synthesize and define nature through their practice. Knotting together instinct and consciousness, combined with an appreciation of the elemental, the works trigger an emotional response and a collective memory of nature.
Adam Buick venerates his landscape using a single pure jar form as a canvas to map his ongoing observations of his surroundings. Buick incorporates stones and locally dug clay into his work to create a narrative, one that conveys a unique sense of place. The unpredictable nature of each jar comes from the inclusions and their metamorphosis during firing. This individuality and tension between materials speaks of the human condition and how the landscape shapes us as individuals. Place holds a tangible presence in the work, touching all our senses, reaching into the imagination and finding expression through a deep and intuitive material knowledge.
Anthony Bryant pays homage to his material through an intuitive understanding of process and technique. Applying traditional methods and the mechanics of making to turning, shaping and hand carving, Bryant reveals the character, cracks, knots, and fissures of wood. These patterns and imperfections in the grain reflect the rhythms and forms in nature and assume a symbolic expression of the natural environment surrounding Bryant‘s studio. He prizes the inherent nature of ash and yew, working huge limbs and trunks using chainsaw, lathe and hand tool into voluptuous, cavernous, paper-thin forms.
Drawing upon his longstanding interest and knowledge of geology, Adam Buick unearths not only the physical resources for his jars but inspiration for their aesthetic. The way he observes, experiences and understands landscape is reflected in the embellishment of their surfaces and the materials within. Taking inspiration from the form of the Korean moon jar, Buick’s thrown and coiled interpretations play with scale and the introduction of locally sourced clays and organic materials. The unpredictable character of each jar comes from these natural elements and their metamorphosis during the firing process. He traverses the coastline to remote coves in search of materials to fuse into his pots and connect back to the places that give him a deep sense of belonging. For this exhibition, Buick has made a series of pieces that reflect these ongoing geological influences and the material tension that he seeks to exploit.
Born in Newport, Gwent, Wales in 1967, Buick studied archaeology and anthropology at Lampeter University, before embarking on the Crafts Council of Ireland Ceramics Design and Skills course. He works from his studio at Llanferran on the North Coast of the St. David’s peninsula, South West Wales. His work is held in several public collections including: Victoria & Albert Museum, London, UK, Devonshire Collection and National Museum, Cardiff, UK. His selected exhibitions include: ‘British Ceramics Biennial’, Spode China Hall, Stoke on Trent, UK (2019); ‘Things of Beauty Growing: British Studio Pottery,’ The Fitzwilliam Museum, Cambridge, UK (2018); UK Pavilion at Cheongju Craft Biennale, Cheongju, South Korea (2017).
Anthony Bryant is a Cornish wood artist creating sculptural forms with a lithe and subtle sensibility. With over 40 years of experience, Bryant demonstrates an ever-evolving style that continually seeks to surpass functionality. Working with native species, he seeks to exploit and reveal the natural characteristics inherent in the wood, stretching the potential of the material in scale and depth.
Bryant’s West Cornwall studio is not far from the village where he was born and grew up, and where he established his first workshop in the late 1970s. His daily life is immersed in the cliffs, beaches, fishing villages, ancient prehistoric sites and the tin and copper mining history with which his family was associated. Tracing his ancestors in the region back to the 1860s, both his father and grandfather worked within the family building business and were first class carpenters and joiners. Consequently Bryant was familiar, from childhood, with workshops, tools, machines, and handling timber of all species.
Bryant has always felt that his work is inseparable from the love of his part of Cornwall that he knows in great detail. Apart from the commitment to his practice, he also spends time walking and exploring the landscape throughout the year, whether on wild and windy days, or on the long hot days of summer. From a young age Bryant was aware how fortunate he was to be born in such a unique place and always felt that he should both share and help preserve it. Now in his 60s, he is slightly surprised at times, that his artistic passion is stronger than ever, feeling the need to devour it even more vigorously than before. Bryant is internationally recognised for his unsurpassed work in green woodturning. His work can be found in museum collections internationally, including: Victoria & Albert Museum, London, UK, Liverpool Museum & Art Gallery, UK and the Sainsbury Collection, Norwich, UK.
Image: Installation view, ‘A Part of Us’, featuring an image by Catherine Garcia, Make Hauser & Wirth Somerset, 2023. Photo: Dave Watts
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