Carole first discovered the wonders of clay at Southport School of Art in 1965, during which time she was taught by ceramics lecturer Monty Sirotto. Carole was astonished by his ability to bring the clay alive and transform it magically into any form he wanted. Later, of course, she understood that his superb craft skills were honed over many years, "but as an immature student it seemed like magic, and I wanted to be able to create magic myself." Carole Windham, MA RCA
The sculptures shown here are part of Carole’s series of work based on the mantelpiece ornaments or “flatbacks,” created by the Staffordshire Potters of the 19th century. The original flatbacks depicted popular figures and events of the time and I use the genre to comment on current affairs and contemporary life.
Each sculpture made by Carole is created using a mixture of handbuilding processes these include slabbing, modelling and carving. When the form is completed the colouring begins and the clay is coated with slips and underglaze colours. After the initial bisque firing the piece is glazed and fired again. The final colours are achieved with the addition of enamels which can mean a further 3 or 4 firings. From beginning to end each sculpture can take as long as 5 months to complete.
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