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Tuesday, 8 December 2015

Ceramics Lunchtime Talk

I'm really enjoying the free lunchtime talks given by Curator Sophie Cummings at the museum and art gallery on a variety of topics. Last week, Sophie gave an introduction to our ceramics collection. When we arrived, a table was set up with some pieces Sophie wanted to talk about:
 The talk was thought provoking, the three different sorts of jugs on the table were fascinating, I hadn't imagined there was so much diversity in jugs, although I do like jugs and appreciate a variety of shapes and patterns. These three were so different, by Sophie's right hand, a relatively utilitarian jug, in the shape of an inverted helmet compared to the shapely jug with crabs and other animals adorning it. On the right hand side of this photo, there's the third jug with a beautifully coloured abstract pattern on it, and would be quite difficult to use for pouring liquids.
 The other pieces on the table were talked about, with a bit of a dichotomy between objects with a use, and those which were purely decorative, or to be admired.
The Highworth Pot, seen below was also mentioned as an amazing piece of pottery
 We then looked in some of the cabinets, and discussed a recent acquisition, the perfume bottle and stoppers made by Grayson Perry

In the same cabinet sits the Goathead Pot which I love:
Mike Yates sent me the following information about it after I'd expressed an interest in the potter who made it:
''It's made by Laurance Simon, born 1959. She is from New York, but has lived in London for a long, long time. She signs her pots with a hand-written "Laurance" on the base. This is quite obsessed with goats! The V&A have a candle-holder in the form of a goat and I know of other goat-related pieces by her. If you want anymore about her, then please let me know."
I've only touched on a fraction of what Sophie talked about, but really enjoyed it. More talks have been advertised on the museum's website: www.swindonmuseumandartgallery.org.uk where three more are listed for 2016.

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