Learning from Nature & New Friends

Leach apprentice Annabelle shares her highlights of June, working alongside artist in residence Andile


Artist in residence, Andile Dyalvane, has been here for a month and I have had such a wonderful time getting to know his south African culture. The Leach studio’s friend Josh from Wild St Ives took us to ancient ruins and woodlands, where we cleansed our hands in a spring at the top of a hill and listened to Andile give appreciation and gratitude for nature, our ancestors and where were are in life.

Still in the theme of Nature, I knew I had to take Andile to my favourite garden in St Ives, The Barbara Hepworth Museum. The way in which Hepworth executes her forms reminded Andile of his work from a couple of years ago and this visit sparked inspiration for the pots he now intends to make at The Leach.

His pots are unlike anything I have seen. They are so big that I could hide inside them, and the textures he creates are from found objects with cut sections and hand made brush markings.  He works very quickly for a hand builder and watching him work has been amazing. Andile’s show will be on in July and it is definitely worth a trip!

A trip to Denmark

In the two months Andile has been here, we have become good friends, so I was so sad to not attend Andile’s exhibition which opened in late June.

The reason for this, however,  is because of a wonderful opportunity – I am going to the Guldagergaard International Ceramic Research Center in Denmark to help Callum Trugeon (the first ever recipient of the Seasalt Leach Bursary) fire a large wood kiln.

In preparation I have made a range of weird and textured pots that I think will work well with the type of firing. Wood kilns have lots of ash flying around so the more textures the better! I am hopeful that Ash will land inside the cracks and crevices, which should then turn into different colours.

These textures I’ve pictured here have been made with thick rope decoration, shells, scratches and seed pods to name a few.

I will be going to Denmark for 11 days, which is just enough time to recuperate after a hectic couple of months. When I come back to St Ives the Leach Studio team will be in full force and enjoying the sunshine.

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