Potteries and Potters: London Delftware Explored
On Thursday 9 May, experts explore how English Delftware riverside potteries between the 17th and 18th centuries played a significant role in London’s early industrial history. On Saturday 11 May, come, make and decorate a large-scale clay sculpture.
London’s Delftware Potters: Who Were They? How Did They Work?
Mike Webber, Thames archaeologist, Roy Stephenson, Museum of London, and other experts explore how the English Delftware riverside potteries played a significant role in London’s early industrial history.
Between the 17th and 18th centuries, these London pothouses grew from small craft operations to mass producers of wares for domestic and international markets. With the recent discovery on the Thames foreshore of ceramic material from the period, archaeologists are raising new questions about the English Delftware potteries’ expansion and decline.
If you are interested in the history of craft, of London, of Lambeth, Southwark or Wapping, or have found fragments on the beach with Delftware’s distinctive blue and white hand-painted decoration, there is much to learn from the evening. There is inspiration here too for practising artists and potters.
Clayground Collective is a company of creative practitioners who collaborate across art forms to engage the public, educators and researchers.
Clayground Collective + Associated Clay Workers Union Present: Delftware Doodles – Apprentice Potters
Between the 17th to 18th centuries, in the potteries around Southwark Cathedral, specifically Montague Close, apprentices practised their ‘potter’s doodles’ on English Delftware bisque sherds rather than on expensive tin glaze. Come, make and decorate your own sherds with master potters and create a temporary, large-scale clay sculpture.
Two large, two-metre high towers are made for the public to add their clay disc-shaped stamped doodles, echoed in the walls of the shaped napped flint stones of the Cathedral.
Clayground Collective, a company of creative practitioners who create clay experiences that engage the public, are collaborating on this project with the Associated Clay Workers Union (ACWU), a group of London-based ceramicists who work together on projects, often with a site-responsive focus. Both organisations exhibit outside gallery settings.