Practice Blog

Ashton Meadows; an edgeland


The site is beautiful. It is organic. It is urban. It is both. It is the best of both.

It is concrete, tarmac and metal.

It is water, clay, trees and grass.

It is dark, damp, dull.

It is used, disused and misused.

It is cared for. It is neglected.

It is empty. It is quiet.

It is part park, but no-one lingers. It is a thoroughfare. A desire line, with minimal desire.

It has a history.

It has a future. There is building work.

It is loud with the clack of travelling vehicles.

It is open space, covered space.

It was a place.

It is named. Its name is unknown.

It is not now a place.

It will be place again.

Studio Action

The following poem highlights the potentiality of plaster of Paris as a material. I use plaster with clay casting slip to produce objects. The aesthetic of the object is largely decided by the inherent qualities of the materials I use.

The accompanying video depicts the physical interactions which occur in the studio; which combined with my activities at Ashton Meadows both create the two spaces where my objects are made.

Poem for the Plaster Room

Bend me,

Shape me,

Anyway you want me.

Wet me,

Mix me,

Mould me,

Force me,

Transform me.

Trim me,

Tidy me,

Polish me,

Cut me,

Construct me.

Chisel me,

Shape me,

Anyway you want me.

Dry me,

Stack me,

Arrange me,

Fill me.

Press me,

Smash me,

Reattach me.

Shape me.

Anyway you want me.

Casting the Void

Objects found on site at Ashton Meadows – such as sticks, rocks and rubbish – are repeatedly inserted into a bed of clay. The clay becomes a mould in which plaster casts can be taken. The ‘voids’ are later developed in the studio  and cast in ceramics using clay found on site.

Adam Buick – Echoes in Clay

As a thrower, I had overlooked Adam Buick’s ceramic practice in favour of ceramic designers and slipcasters.

In the following video, however,  I find that my interests in the landscape and material qualities are found in Buick’s work too.

Buick uses clay sourced directly from the landscape for his slips and glazes. He also uses shingle and sand in the clay body which at high firings produce gun shot explosive marks where the sand melts, pock marking the surface of his forms like bleeding wounds.

Buick’s work harnesses these natural reactions and translates them into a readable language. This ‘unbusying’ of natural randomness permits a

Forthcoming Installation


Next week I will be installing a work investigating the fate of the Isle of Wight dialect.

My practice is centered on discovering the locational identity of place, often by investigating the qualities of local materials. In this particular work, Is it Yoppul? The Fate of Island Speech, I use sound – the material of oral language – to depict current trends in the Island’s unique dialect.

The installation is part of the Ventnor Fringe Festival and includes photography by Tobias Penner. Find out more here.