The 2023 British Ceramics Biennial celebrates the rich potential of clay from storytelling, playfulness, risk-taking and activism.
All Saints Church in Hanley, an Arts & Craft church built ‘by the potters, for the potters’ is at the centre of the 2023 British Ceramics Biennial, with major solo exhibitions nearby at The Potteries Museum & Art Gallery, AirSpace Gallery and The Brampton Museum in Newcastle-under-Lyme.
The highlights of the Biennial (Sept 23 - Nov 5) include:
New work by ten UK-based artists will compete for a £10,000 prize. These artists work in thought-provoking ways and with exceptional levels of skill and technique, using clay to explore everything from Stoke-on-Trent’s rave culture to the impact of sonar pollution on deep-diving whale species.
Visitors can explore, take part and get hands-on with clay, with tile-making activities designed to start conversations about Stoke-on-Trent’s rich ceramics heritage. The clay being used is from the construction site of the new HS2 railway station.
The Tactile Project Space is part of HS2’s arts and culture programme which explores ways to incorporate creative practice into the development of the railway, and works closely with creative practitioners and arts organisations to build relationships with communities, reflecting and enhancing their skills and aspirations.
Created by Neil Brownsword with renowned UK manufacturer Johnson Tiles and exclusively for sale at the Biennial, seven new tile designs reference Staffordshire’s history of cultural borrowing and assimilation.
Place Setting, a film by Deaf artist Nina Thomas exploring the deaf experience in the ceramics industry; Stephen Dixon’s Istoriato: culture and conflict, a large tile panel which looks at the connection between culture and conflict across history; and Emilie Taylor’s That Drop, a series of hand-built pots inspired by the city’s bottle kilns and featuring sgraffito vistas referencing North Staffordshire’s acid house scene in the early 90s.
Other highlights include the Biennial’s international partnership with the Indian Ceramics Triennale, artist Neha Gawand Pullarwar presents a series of works inspired by the first wave of the Industrial Revolution and how it shaped Stoke-on-Trent and the colonial Bombay Province, Mumbai.
There will also be a celebration of new talent in Fresh, an exhibition of 25 early-career artists, and Fresh Talent, where Dorcas Casey, Leora Honeyman and Nico Conti show new work created during the artistic residencies they were awarded at the 2021 Biennial.
Full details at https://www.britishceramicsbiennial.com/