Online Talk: Canadian Ceramics

Join us for a fascinating online panel discussion with experts and artists working in ceramics today.

About this event

Canadian ceramic artist Greg Payce joins Professor Paul Greenhalgh and Dr Claudia Milburn.

Greg Payce lives in Calgary, Alberta, and was Professor of ceramic at ACAD for decades, before stepping back to concentrate purely on his work. Through the decades he has developed a superb form of trompe l’oeil that is entirely his own, in which thrown vessels, sometimes in pairs, sometimes in rows, appear to have standing figures between them. In his work, people fill the voids. Greg’s work is currently on show in the Long Gallery at Messums Wiltshire.

Paul Greenhalgh is Director of the Zaha Hadid Foundation, and Professor Emeritus of Art History at UEA (UK). Previous roles include Director of the Sainsbury Centre (UK), President and Director Corcoran Gallery of Art (Washington DC), Head of Research, V&A Museum. He is academically a specialist in Modern art, design and architecture, and he has always maintained an interest in the ceramic arts, and on the history and theory of museums and exhibitions. He has curated many exhibitions and lectured all over the world.

Claudia joined the team at Messums Wiltshire in 2021, having previously worked in museums and galleries for over a decade. Claudia was Head of Exhibitions and Collections at Pallant House Gallery in Chichester and Curator at the Sainsbury Centre in Norwich. She holds a Masters in Drawing from Norwich University of the Arts and a Bachelors in English and American Literature from the University of East Anglia, where she also completed her doctorate in Art History.

lecture series: Robin DuPont: Wood-firing in Canada

The North-West Ceramics Foundation is pleased to announce that their next speaker, Robin DuPont, will be presenting via Zoom on Sunday, March 27, 2022, at 2pm Pacific Standard Time. The NWCF Speaker Series is free and open to all. All are welcome, but registration is required. Please see here or below to register for this exciting talk.

Robin DuPont received his BFA from the Alberta College of Art and Design in Calgary and his MFA from Utah State University in Logan, Utah. He also studied at the Kootenay School of the Arts in Nelson and the Australian National University in Canberra, Australia. He has been a visiting artist and instructor at numerous institutions, has participated in several artist residencies, and has built a variety of wood-fired kilns in Canada. In 2013, DuPont was nominated for the RBC Emerging Artist Award, and in 2021, he received the North-West Ceramics Foundation Mayer Wosk Award of Excellence. He lives in the Slocan Valley, in the interior of BC. He makes utilitarian wood and atmospheric-fired pots, which are exhibited across Canada and the United States. Recent exhibitions include Thrown, at the Touchstones Museum of Art & History in Nelson, BC, and a solo exhibition, Of This Place, at the Langham, in Kaslo, BC, both in 2021.

In his talk, Wood-firing in Canada, DuPont will share his insights into how the genre of wood-firing plays a role in contemporary ceramics in Canada. He will discuss makers, kilns, influences at work within the genre, and innovating a process that is thousands of years old. From kiln architecture to dispelling stereotypes, the artist will share his thoughts on the people and places contributing to this field.

DuPont’s talk will take place via Zoom on March 27, at 2pm. During the presentation, we ask the audience to please turn off their videos and mute themselves. After the talk, there will be ample time to ask questions via the chat function. We look forward to seeing you there!

To register for this exciting talk by a very popular BC ceramist, see here

For more on Robin DuPont’s work, please see his website.

For more on the North-West Ceramics Foundation and to sign up to receive emails about upcoming events, please see our website.


Claytalks @ Ceramic Art London

CAL is proud to bring you another broad selection of talks, covering many angles of modern ceramics in theory and practice.

Friday 8th April

10.30 – 11.10

Rhiannon Ewing-James, Creative Producer, British Ceramics Biennial

Community of Practice – National Association for Ceramic Educators

The National Association for Ceramic Educators (NACE) is at a pivotal moment in practice and seeking to grow it’s community of practice. NACE is intended as a platform for ceramic education across the UK and Ireland and bringing focus to the rich and diverse learning opportunities which are shaping ceramics today. Join British Ceramics Biennial Creative Producer in talking about NACE, it’s next steps and how you can be involved in mobilising our clay community of educators.

11.30 – 12.30

Paul Greenhalgh

A Larger Vessel: Ceramic and Contemporary Civilisation

Tony Ainsworth Memorial Lecture

Ceramic – by its very nature – has always occupied a particular space in the cultural and social scheme of things. This talk will take this idea and make suggestions as to what its role could and should be now.

Professor Paul Greenhalgh is Director of the Zaha Hadid Foundation in London. His previous roles have included Director of the Sainsbury Centre and Head of Research V&A Museum. Alongside this, he has taught in a number of countries and published widely on the history of art and design.

1.00 – 2.00

Tessa Peters

Doing It Together! Public participation and performance within contemporary clay practice

Ceramic art is often thought to be the outcome of solitary endeavour by individual practitioners, but over the past decade or so many clay artists have developed more socially engaged practices. This talk considers recent examples, their political, educational and aesthetic ambitions, and the potential benefits and possible limitations.

Tessa Peters is an independent curator and educator, a Senior Lecturer at the Ceramics Research Centre-UK, University of Westminster, and an Associate Lecturer at Central Saint Martins.

2.30 – 3.30

C J O’Neill

Material Connections

C J O’Neill Works with silhouettes and stories in combination with ceramics from found objects to 3D printed clay. Course leader for BA(Hons) Product Design & Craft at Manchester School of Art, O’Neill has recently specialised in site specific, residency-based projects.

O’Neill will offer insights to her process of making with others through which objects emerge as a result of meaningful connections. Responding to material, people and context she will demonstrate the contribution of the sometimes unseen others in the work we do and the people we become.

4.00 – 5.00

Smogware in conversation with Sara Howard

Projects that focus on climate emergency

Annemarie Piscaer and Iris de Kievith started Lab AIR, a design collective based in Rotterdam, Netherlands, focused on making the abstract problems that take place in the air visible and experienceable. Their first project is Smogware, which started in Rotterdam and then expanded to other cities. In collaboration with Rosy Napper and Jo Pearl they curated the exhibition ON AIR in the hall of the Crossing @ CAL 2022 using ceramics as a medium to raise awareness of air quality.

Sara Howard is an award-winning ceramic designer and materials researcher, whose practice is focused on reducing the environmental and societal impacts of ceramic production. Sara graduated from Central St. Martins in 2020, studying BA Honours Degree in Ceramic Design. In her final year, Sara designed an industrial symbiosis around the ceramics industry, whereby waste from one industry replaces the raw materials in ceramic production. Sara’s methods and processes are shared in her book, Circular Ceramics, allowing fellow ceramicists to adopt the sustainable processes in their own practice. Currently, Sara is collaborating with ceramic producers and mass manufacturers to implement the use of industrial waste on a larger scale.

Saturday 9th April

10.30 – 11.10

Kate Malone


This talk will discuss the importance and benefits of clay and introduce Kate’s project FiredUp4 which is trying to create more ceramic studios across the country for young people. Besides her studio practice, this is a lifetime commitment.

At the end of 2019, she invited 30 makers to donate their own work for an auction to raise funds to equip and staff ceramic studios inside two OnSide Youth Zones. This was the birth of FiredUp4, now bringing clay into the hands of hundreds of young people in Wigan and Chorley.

Kate Malone, MBE is one of the UK’s leading ceramic artists. From studios in Kent and London; Kate works in three areas: decorative studio ceramics, public art and glaze research. A judge on seasons 1 & 2 of the BBC’s The Great Pottery Throw Down, in 2019 she was awarded an MBE for services to ceramic art.

11.30 – 12.30

Lawrence Epps

Hidden Treasure – acts of acquisition and disrupting the rules of the gallery

Lawrence Epps works with ceramics in a conceptual way. He has a track record for thoughtful, beautifully executed work involving his audience and disrupting the accepted rules of the gallery experience.

He will discuss a range of his most recent projects exploring the nature of chance, success and our relationships to objects of value. Working with ‘the low status and dirty material of clay’ in combination with industrial processes such as extrusion and casting, Epps’ installations ‘invite reflections on conformity, desire and acts of acquisition’.

1.00 – 2.00

Dr Guan Lee

Digital Manual – innovation and experimentation with sustainability of crafts and materials

Dr Guan Lee is a lecturer in architecture and co-founder of Grymsdyke Farm, set in the village of Lacey Green, Bucks, which engages in a wide range of experimental fabrication techniques. Its aim is to design between processes of making and sustainability.

Digital Manual is an ongoing research project which investigates new methods of manufacturing architectural components using different composite materials including clay, while questioning their technological context in the sphere of social sustainability. At Grymsdyke Farm context, place and human skill-based techniques are equally important in an increasingly automated design-manufacturing industry.

2.30 – 3.30

Christie Brown

Untold Forms of Life – conversations with material

Christie Brown offers an overview of her many years of figurative ceramic practice in relation to museum collections, including the Freud Museum, the Museum of Childhood, and most recently the Potteries Museum in Stoke, as part of the BCB 2019. An active member of the CRC-UK she will also reflect on their recent symposium Clay Across Cultures, in the context of the exhibition Beyond the Vessel in Istanbul.

Brown is an artist and Emerita Professor of Ceramics at the University of Westminster. Her work is featured in several private and public collections in Europe and the USA.

4.00 – 5.00

Professor Steve Dixon

Ceramics, narrative and commemoration

The presentation will outline the development of Steve Dixon’s creative process across thirty-three years of ceramic practice, as maker, curator and academic at Manchester School of Art, examining the unique potential of ceramics as a material for narrative and commemoration. Recent projects have focused on issues of conflict and explored strategies of collaboration and co-creation to ‘materialise’ the experience of refugees and asylum seekers in the UK.

Professor Dixon will be giving his talk remotely via video link

Sunday 10 April

11.30 – 12.30

Simeon Featherstone

Keeping it Local with Clay

Simeon reflects on his continued ceramic practice and role as creative facilitator of public art projects in the UK. Using clay to make connections between people and their local environment, he explores how different models of practice can support stronger and healthier communities

Simeon Featherstone develops mixed-scale ceramic artworks in a variety of local settings through his practice, Parasite Ceramics.He also supervises clay activities at MAKE, a new Central Saint Martins’ site working with the local communities of Camden.

1.00 – 2.00

Ceramic Review presents: Adam Nathaniel Furman in conversation with Corinne Julius

Adam Nathaniel Furman trained as an architect, but he now practices largely as an artist and designer with designs varying in scale from mugs and vases to ceramic colonnades and tiled pedestrian underpasses in city centres. Obsessed with ceramics from an early age, he is passionate about bringing art into the public realm in a way that is relatable, non-intimidating and practical. He discusses his wide-ranging practice taking ceramic designs to new heights and pushing the boundaries of possibilities, with journalist, broadcaster and curator, Corinne Julius.

2.30 – 3.30

Sue Pryke

Ceramics, craft and industry

Pryke has a passion for tableware; she works simultaneously across several scales of production, from her own slip-casting practice, to designing for industry giants. She delivers pared back simple forms that are about function and utility, but at the same time imbue familiarity and warmth. Her style is derived from a mix of traditional British tableware design from experience as a designer at Wedgwood to working with IKEA.

Sue Pryke has been working within the tableware industry for 25 years, collaborating with volume producers and high street retailers, as well as making small scale studio work for independent shops and galleries. She is currently a judge on The Great Pottery Throwdown.

Ronnie Watt: Reading a negotiation and expression of identity in South African Ceramics – Lecture

The North-West Ceramics Foundation is pleased to announce Dr. Ronnie Watt as their next speaker for their Speakers Series. Dr. Watt will present via Zoom on Sunday, February 27, 2022, 11 am Pacific Time. This daytime presentation will allow interested parties from Europe and Africa to attend. All are welcome, but registration is required. Please see here or below to register for this exciting talk.
Dr. Ronnie Watt is a collector and specialist researcher of South African studio pottery and studio ceramic art. He is a graduate and postgraduate of the University of South Africa. His Master’s dissertation addressed South African studio pottery of the later twentieth century and its Anglo-Oriental label. The focus of his PhD was a contextual history of South African ceramics of the twentieth and twenty-first centuries. He has published numerous articles on South African studio pottery. After retiring from his career as journalist and producer of television programmes, he emigrated from South Africa to Canada in 2015 and is now resident in Nanaimo on Vancouver Island where he continues his research and writing.
Dr. Watt’s lecture will discuss what is a distinctive feature of South African ceramic art, the expression of identity within a multi-cultural society. Contemporary ceramics produced by both white and black ceramists reveal the practice of cultural referencing to be a conscious engagement with issues of identities, values and meanings, which are expressed as complex symbolism and metaphor in the visual vocabulary. The lecture will refer to works by 20th and 21st century South African ceramists such as Maggie Mikula, Andile Dyalvane, S’bonelo Thau Luthuli, and Michelle Legg.
To register for this talk, please register (free of charge) here: