Making Spoons with Mixed Media Handles

Saturday 17th July 2021, 10:00 — 13:00

Ceramic Workshops

Making Spoons in Paper Clay

An opportunity to explore the delights of combining natural plant materials with porcelain paper clay and the joys of working with such an adaptable material.

About Paper Clay

Paper pulp added to clay extends its creative possibilities. It is extremely versatile, warp-free and light after firing. The opportunity to be experimental, allows the maker to be more of an artist and less of a technician.

Making Porcelain Spoons

Embossed detail using Plant Fragments

A series of porcelain structures are made in a variety of small press moulds, using fresh plant fragments such as seeds and grasses which are pressed into the clay surface to create embossed patterns and textures. Oxides can be painted in selected areas to highlight the detail. There will be a selection of small branches, twigs, or seed pods to create the handles. The components chosen can be constructed together after the porcelain sections have been fired. Advice will be given as to alternative ways to attach the handles.

All materials and tools will be supplied. There will be a fee of £6.00 to cover the cost of clay and firings. Arrangements will be made with the participants for the collection of fired work. Each participant will make a name tag out of clay with stamped letters to accompany their work for identification.

8 participants per workshop

The workshops are suitable for beginners and experienced potters.

What to Bring

Participants are recommended to bring an apron and a small hand towel – also wear appropriate work clothes. If you have any pottery tools, you are welcome to bring those.

Plant fragments

A selection will be supplied but you are welcome to bring items from their garden or collections from your local walks.

What to look out for:

Leaves that have strong pronounced vein detail, seed pods and small sticks, for example, will cast well. Longer twigs or branches can be adapted to make handles.

Please note: Plants with very fine and delicate sections will not cast well as the weight of the clay tends to swamp the detail.

About Claire Ireland

During the first coronavirus lockdown in March 2020, ceramic sculptor Claire Ireland decided to create a project for friends, neighbours, all her students and fellow artists. She invited them to make a spoon in clay and the Brentford Spoon Project was born. Parcels of clay were given out to all the participants living locally and the invitation started to spread to makers further afield, often working in other mediums. This has resulted in a diverse and eclectic collection of more than eighty spoons so far and promises from more makers who want to contribute. To compliment this project Claire has designed a series of ceramic workshops generously hosted by the Makerversity team at Somerset House.

See more of her work on her Website and follow on Instagram.

This event is free for Makerversity members

Saturday 17th July 2021
10:00 — 13:00

New Wing, Somerset House
The Strand