A masterclass with Sharon Griffin
Title: Making a Clay Bust
Artist: Sharon Griffin
Date: 20th & 21st January 2024
Timings: 0930 for 10am to 4.30pm
Venue: The Clay Loft, Inchbrook Mill, Stroud, GL55EZ
Using clay, Sharon Griffin sculpts the figure and the face, capturing the essence of the universal human condition in its rawest sense.
Oxides, slips and glazes are ‘drawn’ into the surfaces of the clay creating textured, multi-layered works of art which are highly emotive and full of energy. Her sophisticated knowledge of the material merges traditional making techniques with contemporary figurative ceramics blurring boundaries between studio ceramics and fine art sculpture.
Drawing upon her passion for education, psychology and story-telling, Sharon makes work to provide a platform where discussions surrounding identity can take place.
Her work can be uplifting, joyful and slightly unnerving.
After studying ceramics and glass at the University of Wolverhampton (94-97) Sharon became a Lecturer of Art and Design and taught ceramics, glass, painting and drawing at Telford College for 15 years. Sharon developed her own work alongside her teaching career, taking part in a MA and supporting her young family.
The development of slab building technique transpired over 20 years. The fast slab-building technique has now become a trademark for Sharon, who manages to capture energy and emotion through the use of gestural mark making and a combination of gazes, stains, slips and oxides.
Sharon lives and works in Telford, Shropshire with her family and smelly dog Pepper. Her environment and surroundings are a constant source of inspiration. You can find more about Sharon via her website:
Description of the course:
You will learn to play and reconnect with yourself, journaling, sketching in clay and finding your own voice. Lots of serious fun exploring a series of fast gestural techniques exploring ‘flat’ and ‘fat’, shape, weight and form to explore what a clay bust is!
You will be shown how to make features (eyes, lips, nose, mouth, ears etc) using very simple sculpting techniques. We will be working from our own drawings, found images and our own faces within the studio.
Some experience of handling clay is great but this workshop is for anyone; beginner, intermediate or advanced. If you can create a mark, this workshop is for you!
We will explore mark-making, drawing into the clay and how using surfaces can enhance the narrative or story within a sculpture.
You will create a series of experimental clay surfaces using traditional and unconventional methods of decorating to create an unique surface on your clay bust. Techniques such as sgraffito, mono print, painting, scratching, drawing and general mark making will be used in a playful and spontaneous way.
We will explore how we approach the surface and how this approach can effect the energy within the mark making.
At the end of the 2 day workshop, the busts can be taken home to fire, or fired at The Clay Loft for a small additional fee.
What you will need:
A sketchbook/paper to journal and write down notes.
A mirror (handheld)
Optional printed reference pictures of a particular person/animal you feel inspired by
Please note that this is not intended to be a portrait workshop where accuracy and specific measurements take place. The workshop is to help free the creativity and explore storytelling through the creation of a clay bust.
Max of 12 students.
Please ensure you read and accept the Terms and Conditions before booking onto a course as these contain relevant information regarding cancellation and course refunds.