Being fully submerged into the world of ceramics and begin to explore its qualities, processes and possibilities.
I feel very positive about my first year of Ceramic degree; however, the feeling is conquered by the overwhelming drive to learn and explore more.
The intensive workshops and lectures at the beginning of the year, followed by my trials and errors showed me the immense depth in ceramic, and also art in itself.
I focused my work towards the shape and structure and what meaning they can carry.
Starting with the fascinating documentary photography by Bernd and Hilla Becher of old industrial structures and analysing the main elements through work of Felicity Aylieff, Annie Turner, Steve Buck, Alison Britton, or Katharine Morling.
I feel I only scraped all the possibilities of manipulating clay and can still extend on my skills relating to throwing and turning, hand-building or slip-casting. I feel confident to use these techniques well and safely, but still able to perfect them endlessly – to the direction of perfect functionality and perfect repetition, and to the other extreme of expressive experimentation.
The surface was a bit trickier, with me taking rather slower to understand glazes and come with a satisfying result. I still mixed and experimented wit numerous glazes and combination, I just need a summer to process all the information and grasp the knowledge.
For my final pieces I adapted and mixed few stoneware matt transparent glazes, an rusty glaze and a found gold pigment glaze recipe. Used slip, wax resist, sgraffito, different form of application (pour, dip, spray). However, now I feel I haven’t done enough testings with them as I’m not completely satisfied with the end result of the final pieces.
By his I just found more questions rather than answers, and direction to explore rather than the ones I managed to probe to a satisfactory level, than ever before.
Undoubtedly, I seized every opportunity to learn and absorb knowledge and experience like a sponge, and I do feel significantly fuller but still hungry for more.
With the constellation I managed to tap into the infinite academic exploration that excites me, and being able to critically think and explore topics in such a deep level for the first time when practically working with a material must be the biggest merit of this year.
That’s why I’m sparked to carry on learning even more in the future: continuing now this summer followed by next academic year.