Studio Talks with porcelain ceramicist, Annie Greenwood
Annie Greenwood is a ceramicist who works with porcelain. Her work is a macro non-representational visual interpretation of nature and the elements that surround us. The finished products like her own personality are contemplative and beautifully serene, the pieces allow for reflection. They teach us that taking time out and looking closely is something we all can learn from.
CE: We have just come out of a long spell of lockdown, did you work through it and if so what have you brought from it?
AG: I didn’t do any work, we had a really fantastic spring and summer so I was in the garden and spent all of it in the garden and also walking the dogs. So it became a really nice alternative routine where you tend to the garden, walk but also walk places that you perhaps would not have ordinarily because you couldn’t go to the beaches. I felt a bit trapped but in some ways it didn’t matter as there wasn’t anywhere to take work. So it was almost like a bit of a holiday. I did take lots of macro photos in the garden. What I enjoyed was watching the season unfold in a macro way. Each spring you think my goodness that’s so very fresh and green, yet it seemed more vibrant than usual. So there was almost a heightened awareness of the natural world. Lockdown was difficult for so many people. Personally, I liked the solitude and felt incredibly fortunate alongside living in a part of the world that almost remained untouched from the harshness.
If there were any changes in my work, they were all very subtle which is not always apparent in terms of form. Colour and texture don’t always get into the work straight away, it might be years down the line. I did think in retrospect that I missed a trick and then when suddenly it was announced that everything was open I then had to get on it and work very hard.
How does North Wales influence your practice?
North Wales is my home, it’s where I was born so I have the sense of belonging. I’m surrounded by the lichen growing on the rocks, stones sanded by the sea and the beaches all of which have a huge impact on my work, yet very subtly. I work in porcelain which very soft and very smooth. The porcelain feels like it has been smoothed by age and time, as the pebbles on the beach have been worn by water. I am lucky to be in an environment that supports my well-being and creative well-being. I can pick up a pebble and there’s a mark here and there might be a circumference mark that I feel might not appear for a while. I use inlay or scrafito? So I may make incisions and fill it or put on a slip and scratch away, it’s a bit like the geology of the rocks, which is how things tend to be informed.