‘Synthesis’ is Studio Eleven’s 3rd exhibition of 2019 and features Barry Stedman, Ceramicist and Lesley Williams, Painter.
Barry’s work is loosely thrown and altered on the potter’s wheel or constructed from slabs of clay. He regards the vessels as vehicles to explore contrasts created in the everyday by natural phenomena – light and shade, hard and soft, warm and cool colours, rough and smooth surfaces. Tensions and rhythms of pattern, alongside harmonies of colour, are captured in the applied painterly surfaces permanently, in pure materials to create pots which explore the ‘in – between’. Pots are complimented with his gouache drawings of colour, spaces, lines and textures found in ceramic form and surface in the exhibition.
Ideas begin with sketches and are developed through drawing, painting, and multiple firings of the ceramic forms simultaneously. The warmth and brightness of slips, oxides and underglazes fired to earthenware temperature kiln firings, applied over a red clay body creates depth and richness. The surfaces are fabricated in layers, firing in between using thin washes, wiping back and building up rich zones of colour. Glaze is selected and added later to create further depth, tone and texture.
Barry found ceramics later in life after a career in retail. He completed the Ceramics degree course with a first class BA (hons) at the University of Westminster in Harrow.
Lesley seeks to investigate what lies beyond the immediate surface of her environment, endeavouring to select the spaces around a subject to re-organise and intuitively ‘make up’ her perception. This translation is juxtaposed to produce brightly coloured paintings with the quality of colour captured from her investigations into gardens, ponds, and the wider landscape.Colour and translucency are at the heart of Lesley’s paintings. Her colour work is greatly influenced by the paintings of Bonnard and Redon. Paintings are semi – abstract compositions that select ways of seeing the gardens, water and the landscape. The painterly surface is invigorated further through her understanding of colour relationships, the imagined movement and form that suggest a feeling for a specific moment – captured in paint.
Lesley Williams was born in York and gained a BA (Hons) in Textile Design at Nottingham Trent University and later an MA in Fine Art from Leeds Metropolitan University.
Studio Eleven is a gallery, studio and workshop space offering specialist studio space for ceramicists and a shared workshop for printmaking. Events include artist talks, workshops, hire of the studio space and a rolling programme of exhibitions. Adele Howitt manages and directs the enterprise, enlisting the support of a voluntary team of artists and potters who use the studio space.