BA (Hons) Ceramic Design - Central Saint Martins, 2023
Gemma Smale is a ceramic artist researching the use of hand-sourced materials to reconnect consumers to ceramic art through place-making. Through her questioning of industrial clays, often never stating their original source, she wonders how this distances the value of the products that we buy. By grounding her work in familiar materials from familiar places, her work becomes a celebration of the land and its impurities by holding onto textural additions that would otherwise be removed through industrial clay manufacturing. She values regional art and the history of the land by intertwining these materials into the fabric of the clay body and the glaze. In this way, each piece values the different regional arts that have been lost through mass importation of materials across the world.
Current works are fired in a traditional wood fired kiln for multiple days where different wood ashes settle and glaze each piece in a completely unique way.