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Wendy Hoare

I studied fine art at Reading University, taking my degree in 1967.   I specialised in sculpture, after a course including art history, life drawing and a study of Greek art and ceramics.    I set up my own workshop in 1989.
My large one-off pots are built entirely with hand rolled coils of clay.   Bases are slabs cut into various ovals and triangles. The pots are coiled up from the base; not altered, not assembled. There follows much paddling with spatulas, wooden coat-hangers and large rubber balls, to keep a nice plump pot.   The process takes two to three weeks.

I plan my direction but each pot is still a big adventure into form and texture. Texture is achieved by the building process and by type of clay. I use several hand-building / crank clays. Each has its own character, producing subtle changes in approach and resulting textures. The red, white and buff bodies help expand my colour range. I want the colour seem built-in , not added on, decoration .
After a bisque firing, stains and frit are mixed with water and gum arabic and brushed liberally onto the pot.   I burnish the surface to reveal the texture and even the colour, before firing in a 13 cubic foot kiln to 1200-1260oC. Drying, firing, cooling are all slow and steady.

I use and adapt traditional vessel forms with ideas and details translated from the natural world. Long country walks provide visual drawing lessons and prove excellent for solving pot problems.

Ceramic influences include Greece, Africa, S. America, Monica Young, Ruth Duckworth, many contemporary potters. Other sources, Egyptian, Assyrian and Mediaeval sculpture, Hepworth, Arp and Brancusi.

Following an article in an international art/craft magazine, I recently received a commission from the Hong Kong art consultants Koru Contemporary Art for 5 of my pots. These were to be installed in the Metropolitan Hotel being completed in Tianjin, China. The 5 pots are now installed in the  pool/sauna annex of  the hotel.

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"So long, and thanks for all the fish"

After very many years of craft&design we've decided that we'd like to retire and so in 6 days we will close the craft&design website, including craft&design Online and the craft&design Selected Makers and Craft and Design Month websites. We've had a brilliant 35 years and would like to thank all our readers, advertisers, writers, contributors and website visitors for their support throughout that time. Our very best wishes to you all for the future - Angie and Paul.