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Art is my passion. For as long as I can recall I have been absorbed by the process of creating items that translate my own view of things into tangible objects. As a young child I enjoyed drawing and painting and have been painting in oils and watercolours and later, pastels, since my early teens. My subjects have ranged from wildlife to landscapes, and more recently, comissioned portraits in acrylics and pencil.

Some years ago I experimented with unfired clay and was immediately captivated by the way the three-dimensional aspect freed my imagination to develop unusual and unrestrained ideas. Fired clay soon became my preferred medium with ceramic sculpture now forming the overwhelming majority of my work.

Sometimes I begin a piece with a clear vision of what I want to achieve and at other times I randomly shape the clay until it suggests a more defined idea. The unpredictability of working with clay reminds of the unpredictability of life and this often shows itself in the understated sense of humour in some of my work. I know a piece is ready for firing when it speaks to me.

I find the classical mythologies to be a rich source of ideas and my tendency to combine human and animal forms frees me from the constraints of classical figurative sculpture; it enables me to express myself both artistically and with the sense of humour that naturally finds its way into my work.

There are also many iconic images from the 20th and 21st centuries that I intend to celebrate in future work. Several of these are already work-in-progress and will be finished shortly.

I prefer my work to appear old or even ancient and to that end tend to work with my own glaze recipes that avoid high gloss or bright colours – ‘recently excavated’ is a fair description of what I try to achieve when finishing the work. The combination of a contemporary style and ancient appearance is central to my current output and, like a medieval oak chest in a modern dwelling, it blends harmoniously with any environment.

Elizabeth Spiers
December 2013