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2-25 September 2022: True to Form by Francis Lloyd-Jones

2-25 September 2022: True to Form by Francis Lloyd-Jones

We are proud to present our first guest artist at our new space on Hackney Road.

For the month of September we present work by Francis Lloyd-Jones.

True to Form features quiet, domestic objects made for use. They are all thrown on the potters wheel and sometimes altered but all look for a balance between looseness and definition, to distill two opposing qualities of clay in a single piece. They are intended for daily routine, drawing out the contentment of habitual activities.

Having developed a palette of muted glazes, he has most recently begun to explore the use of salt and soda firing having become familiar with the process during his apprenticeship with Lisa Hammond and has established an appreciation of its idiosyncrasies.

Francis studied Fine Art at Chelsea College of Art initially. After completing the two year Ceramic Skills and Design Course in Thomastown, Ireland, he went straight on to work at Maze Hill Pottery as apprentice to south London based, Lisa Hammond, finishing in January 2022.

A few questions we asked Francis ahead of the exhibition:

Name of your exhibition & short sentence summing it up
True to Form encompasses my most recent work, spanning the end of my time at Maze Hill pottery and the beginning of my time in Cumbria. Whilst the forms have remained similar, changing kilns has yielded different surfaces.

How long have you been working with, and how did you end up working with clay?
With a family background in studio pottery, I've been fortunate enough to have been surrounded by and used handmade pots in daily life for as long as I can remember. About 6 years ago an appreciation turned into the desire to make and so started a long process of training; first in Thomastown, Ireland and then as apprentice to Lisa Hammond at Maze Hill in Greenwich finishing earlier this year.

A maker whose work you love and admire that we should know about but might not?
I came across the work of an American potter/artist called Andrew Sartorius fairly recently. He makes beautiful wood fired sculptural work, some thrown and some slab built from what I can tell. They look to be nicely balanced asymmetric forms. Yoji Yamada, one of Lisa's apprentices from years ago has an interesting take on slipware. I've admired his work for a while.

You left London when you finished at Maze Hill in January; what has been the most exciting prospect and biggest challenge?
The biggest challenge was leaving London, leaving a place I loved working, leaving friends/family and moving to rural Cumbria not knowing anyone but with an interesting project in its relative infancy to jump head long into. That's what was exciting, The Farmers Arms run by Grizedale Arts. It's a wonderfully varied project that has me making all sorts of things I wouldn't usually make as part of the rejuvenation and reimagining of a sixteenth century Inn. My time is split between that and maintaining my own work, with plans to build kilns on site before long.

What is your favourite part of the making process?

There is no one part of the making process I can single out as most enjoyable. I am quite a restless maker, working in relatively small batches of objects. I think that keeps all aspects interesting, forever tweaking things.

I enjoy returning to forms I haven't made in a while, keeping the weights and measures the same but what happens within those parameters can drift.

Where does your inspiration usually come from?
It has always been important for me to look outside studio pottery. It may not seem apparent as what I make are definitely pots, mostly functional, but all manner of influences find their way in. Of course other potters and pots come into it but by no means exclusively.

Recent group exhibitions Francis has participated in include
- Ash Ember Flame, Embassy of Japan, London
- Lisa Hammond; Future Perfect at Make, Hauser and Wirth, Somerset
- The Sunlight in the Garden, Joanna Bird Contemporary
- Contemplative Tones at Clay College, Stoke-on-Trent

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