Recalling the Blue, original painting by Shirley Vauvelle

Art, Ceramics & Contemporary Art

Shirley Vauvelle

Shirley has always made things since childhood, sewing dolls clothes or making things from found natural forms such as sea shells. She has been a designer, educator, craft maker, gallery owner and for almost fifteen years maker/artist showing work in galleries around the UK. She feels painting and ceramics overlap in the way she treats the surfaces, with a search for depth and a sense of herself. Her practise has tended to produce playful component pieces combined with found materials, assemblages inspired by creatures, birds and plants. It is now developing into larger scale semi abstract hand built sculptural ceramic forms and paintings.

Shirley’s art education background and initial design career was in textile/surface decoration, studying at Chester college for a foundation course and Leicester Polytechnic for a BA Hon’s, graduating in 1987. Self taught in ceramics, she works from a light filled studio in her home, which has been featured in publications including the The Observer Magazine and is situated near the east coast english seaside town of Filey. She also has a separate smaller painting studio which does not stop her producing larger scale works. An important part of her surroundings is the coast and her garden which is continuously being developed and evolving, full of many interesting plants selected for form, texture rather than prettiness, many of which are used within her work.

The work has evolved over a long period of time, in the background of her more commercial work. After the experience of lockdown, with more time to experiment and freedom to think about ideas, this has led to hand built sculptures and assemblages in stoneware and porcelain clay, with found materials. With the luxury of more time to appreciate peace and nature, allowing thinking space to the stages of development, it is very much reflected in how the pieces have evolved.

The work is now moving forward with more personal expression, still taking inspiration from her surroundings focusing on balance of shapes, pushing materials further and her own emotion reactions to them. Exploring  surfaces, playing with found materials, different clays and paint all with the emphasis on looking at the different relationships of form, texture and colour. Also thinking about the wider context of nature on our planet, the strength and fragility of nature.

Shirley Vauvelle Artist Portrait

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