One of the things I’m struggling to source is flower pots. All the ones I have are household objects. Everything from wine coolers or champagne buckets, to zinc bins and fruit bowls. Silk flowers have longer stems and don’t require water. My mission is to create tall opaque vases that are weighted at the bottom or made from heavy, dense material. I want texture, variegated colours and dull, matt finishes.
All the themes I have in mind are inspired by great artists. The first of these is dull, black vases that appear to melt onto the table, reminscent of Gaudi’s architecture and inspired by Salvador Dali’s melting clock. I’m also thinking golden vase crowns or supersize chess pieces and headless human figures.
This last idea was inspired by the sculptor Paul Gatenby whose work I discovered at a recent Morningside Gallery event. Intrigued by a clay crowd titled “Watching . . . Waiting” my friend Eva and I were transfixed by the crowd’s gaze. It was only the detail of each clay face that prevented us from craning our own necks above the throng of the gallery’s Christmas party crowd to discover what the sculpted scene was looking at. Sensing our enthusiasm, the owner Mike took us to the store room to unpack other pieces. A proud King and Queen were my favourites and I’ve been thinking about them ever since.
Gatenby uses raku and smoke to make a visual recording of the firing process. The results add earthy beauty to his work and makes the figures seem less naked. He’s currently lecturing in Liverpool, but I would love to collaborate on designing a series of vases using a similar process.
This is why I love interiors. I never know when something will inspire me. I love discovering beautiful things but introducing them to a wider audience is better.