Artist Biography, Tracy Ford

My new work is based on my time living in Ireland and a direct response to the West Coast and Connemara. I use a super white raku clay and decorate with thin washes of cobalt oxide and green under glaze. I try to create a watercolour feel which reflects the atmosphere of the sea around that stretch of coast. I have left areas of the clay body unglazed to reveal the raw texture beneath.

Hand-building and especially coiling,is my preferred method of working and I resist the use of tools so that the human touch can emanate throughout the piece.
The coils remain visible on the outside with the hand marks evident on the inside. Decoration is allowed to occur freely with spontaneous mark making.

Coiling is a very basic and primitive technique which has been used for thousands of years by human beings to make vessels and I find the whole process invigorating and therapeutic which is very reminiscent of childhood.

I like to work instinctively and quickly, to encourage life into my pieces. I have a "one take" approach and try not to over exert the clay. For me, the piece must not lose its spontaneity and look laboured. The clay remembers this and the work loses life.

I draw inspiration from my immediate surroundings and situations. I love the magic of ceramics and the alchemy of it all. I hope the viewer enjoys the variation and individuality of this collection as much as I have enjoyed creating it.

Previous series of work concentrate on immortalising and preserving fragile vintage textiles, protecting them from time, tarnish and decay.

Tracy Ford