In this weeks Workshop we did Amy’s chosen workshop. We were all sat in a group while Amy timed us doing paintings. It started with 1 minute, then 2 minute, 3,5,8,10 and then 12 minute painting times. We had to chose something to paint so i chose my phone case and the pop socket. The first few minutes were quite stressful, trying to get as much painted as possible, but it was really fun to see what you could do in such a short time span. we eventually hung up our favourite ones at the end, mine was the 10 minute one where i just painted the pop socket. i felt it was a good enough time and I got some nice detail in there.
Richard Batterham (born 1936, died 2021) was sculpture artist, dedicated to living a life of self-sufficiency with his family in Dorset.
Batterham undertook every stage of making pottery himself, from processing raw clay to firing his three-chamber oil fired climbing kiln. He made many useful pots, jugs, bottles, plates, mugs and storage jars. Effortlessly scaling them up or down. Using wood ash, manganese or salt glaze.
He first learnt Potter at Bryanston school in Dorset, and began a two-year apprenticeship at the Leach pottery in 1957 where he met his wife Dinah Dunn.
His last supervised exhibition was at the V&A in 2021 shortly before his death. He requested his work was distributed amongst selected museums, Aberystwyth ceramic collection being amongst them.
His work displayed at the Aberystwyth art centre is complimented by his friends work including Gwyn Hanssen Pigott and French potter Thiebaut Chague.
His series of tazza emerged around 1972, chalice-like, but practical. Cut-sided bowls were among Batterham’s most powerful and mysterious creations. The pot was thrown more heavily than usual with a paint scraper used to cut facets round the piece, a kind of radical turning.
His pots are not decorated in the usual sense and, although his work has been regarded as “neo-Oriental”, there is no oriental brushwork. Subtly positioned chatter marks and incised or raised lines harmoniously bring out the shape of the pot, which may also be beaten or otherwise subtly altered. Great variety is achieved by apparently simple means, using the simplest of tools.
His workshop, built in 1966 on a generous scale, with a large climbing kiln, had his potter’s wheel at the centre of the building. Outside sat a long stack of wrapped clay and behind the building a vegetable garden – his work fell into a rhythm linked to the gardening year – and more clay maturing in a sequence of drying beds. Family life and making went hand in hand.
This week was focused on getting the sculptures together and painting them ready for the proposal next week. I painted bits and pieces of them with acrylic to get an idea of how they will look finished so I could present them too Miranda and describe how they will look in the takeover. It is amazing to see how far they have come from just playing around with clay to get some basic shapes of what I was going to make.