Blue & Gold Speak Vase
The surface pattern on this vase was inspried by a teaching visit to Jingdezhen in China in 2018. I had been asked to teach at the Jingdezhen Ceramics Institute and so, during that time, took the opportunity to research the amazing place I found myself in: the home of Chinese porcelain, a place with a 2000 year history of porcelain clay being dug from the ground, wrked and then sold all over the owrld. The Ming Dynasty shards were a real inspiration to this piece because they made me newly appreciate the materiality of the use of cobalt within ceramics - a ceramic pigment famous for its bright blue. These shards that had once made up whole, complete images were suddenly abstractified by having been broken and had become these amazing jewels that were intriguing to me. When I came home from that 5 week visit to China I developed new surface patterns to include the use of cobalt blue and something of the abstract surface designs from those shards that are so prevalent in Jingdzhen.
I believe in Making as a vehicle for expression, for the articulation of thoughts that cannot be expressed through language.
For the last 13 years I have specialised in wheel-throwing porcelain after a training that began 20 years ago. Porcelain objects are renowned for their beauty and delicacy but, as a maker, it is an amazing material to work with because of its elastic and fluid feel as a clay. These material qualities lend themselves to methods of making not possible with other clays; whilst its qualities after kiln-firing, such as translucency, allow it to glow in strong light.
From the smallest cup to a large, unique vessel, I make by hand all my work. Each piece is always an individual item: a reflection of the shape of my hands as well as my intentions as a ceramic designer.
I am a Royal College of Art graduate and have exhibited internationally. In recent years I have worked with, amongst others, the National Portrait Gallery, Yorkshire Sculpture Park, the Hepworth Wakefield, Somerset House, Heals and the National Trust. My work is available from the Contemporary Ceramics Centre in Bloomsbury, as well as other stockists (list available on www.jo-davies.com), and the Cheongju International Craft Competition holds my work in their permanent collection. My practice has been supported by the Crafts Council and Arts Council England.