Work on a potter's wheel using porcelain clay, often referred to
as white gold due to its beautiful translucent quality when fired
to a high temperature. Taking inspiration from historical dining
vessels, you are shown a number of techniques including how to make
handles and surface embellishments. Suited to those who have
previously completed a beginners' throwing course.
Often referred to as 'white gold', porcelain is sumptuous white clay that has a beautiful translucent quality when fired to a high temperature. This course provides an excellent opportunity for you to experience working (throwing) on the potter's wheel using porcelain clay. Due to the challenging nature of the material, this course is better suited to students who have previously completed a beginners' throwing course or have experience of the throwing technique.
The focus of this course is to work in the spirit of Louisa's practice, which is influenced by historical dining vessels. The first evening will start with an introductory talk about Louisa's practice, followed by a brief overview of porcelain and the throwing technique.
On the first full day we start with clay preparation (kneading and wedging) and a throwing demonstration. You will be shown a number of techniques throughout the day and given one to one tuition and encouragement to build confidence.
On the second day we cover the finishing processes of turning, as well as how to make handles and surface embellishments.
The final day offers time for further throwing practice for those who wish it and/or completion of pieces. The session will end with a group discussion and review of the work.
The course is limited to eight students with each having the use of a wheel for the whole weekend. You are likely to finish the course with 6-8 pieces.
Arrival Day - this is the first date listed above
Courses start early evening. Residential students to arrive from 4pm, non-residential students to arrive by 6.45pm.
6.45pm: Welcome, followed by dinner (included).
8 - 9pm: First teaching session, attendance is essential.
Classes 9.15 - 5pm, lunch is included.
From 6.30pm: Dinner (included for residential students).
Evening working - students may have access to workshops, but only with their tutor's permission and provided any health and safety guidelines are observed.
Classes 9.15am - 3pm, lunch is included.
Residential students are to vacate their rooms by 10am please.
(This timetable is for courses of more than one day in length. The tutor may make slight variations)
Firing and Glazing options:
1. Leave any raw, finished pieces that you wish to keep, for biscuit firing, basic glazing and re-firing by the College, for collection within six months.
2. Leave raw, finished pieces for biscuit firing at the College. You can then book a place on a Glazing Day and glaze your own work (allowing 4 weeks for your work to be biscuit fired). This work will be re-fired after glazing and available for collection within six months.
3. Take away your unfired pots for firing and glazing elsewhere.
Course reading list:
For those interested in reading any books before the course, the following may be in your public library: Advanced Pottery by Linda Bloomfield (Robert Hale Ltd) Ceramics: Tools and Techniques for the Contemporary Maker by Louisa Taylor (Jacqui Small publishing) Ceramics for Beginners: Wheel Throwing by Emily Reason (Lark Books) Contemporary Porcelain: Materials, Techniques & Expressions by Peter Lane (A&C Black) Porcelain by Jack Dogerhty (University of Pennsylvania Press) The Complete Potters Companion by Tony Birks (Conran Octopus) The Techniques of Throwing by John Colbeck (Batsford Watson-Guptill) Throwing by Richard Phethean (Blandford) Throwing pots by Phil Rogers (A&C Black)
Louisa Taylor studied an MA in Ceramics and Glass at the RCA, London (2004-2006). She is based in Brighton where she produces her ceramic tableware range for shops, galleries and collectors in the UK and internationally. She is a Senior Lecturer at the University of Brighton and a member of the Crafts Potters Association and Contemporary Applied Arts.