© Claire Lovett 2009/2010

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By Claire Lovett, May 31 2015 07:25PM

The Georgian manor Trereife House is home to The Cornwall Design Fair each August. As part of the event, owners Tim and Liz Le Grice along with their children Georgina and Peter invite selected designer-makers to display their work in their beautiful home in ‘Curated at Trereife’.


I have exhibited at the show for the past 3 years and 2 out of the 3 years I have been lucky enough to display some of my work in the drawing room, a fantastic setting which really enhanced my work. "They go so well in there" said Liz Le Grice.


As a little ‘thank you’ to the Le Grice family, I made them a personalised plate with their family name and Trereife House stamped onto the surface, a small token of appreciation for all the work they do.


It is a fantastic show, fabulously organised by such a small team and I really enjoyed being back down in the South West, not too far from where I was at University in Plymouth. There is a real creative buzz in this area of the country, and I always meet lots of lovely people.


By Claire Lovett, May 31 2015 04:18PM

"Faded words, decaying surfaces, peeling wallpaper, and flaking paint - history is richly documented all around us, often in the most overlooked of places"


My love of ageing surfaces often lands me quizzical looks when I'm caught taking snaps of rusty metal, flaking paint and other crumbling derelict stuff! Images of urban deterioration, weathered and worn surfaces, the collections at the British Museum and the V&A, as well as Cities such as Paris and Barcelona particularly inspire me.


My work encompasses my interests in nostalgia and the power of time. The effect time has on our surroundings and surfaces, as well as the change and progression caused by its passage is particularly intriguing. It creates beauty in the old and abandoned, and locks history into our surroundings.


This idea of history being ‘locked’ in our surroundings is unmistakable in old houses, where layer upon layer of wallpaper, plaster and paint is often found; the present generation literally papering over the past. Peeling back those layers reveals this history, uncovering secrets and memories from those that lived there before, much like an archaeological discovery. These concepts prompted me to begin researching my own ancestry and family tree.

The idea of archaeology became another key interest of mine, and this quote by Julian Thomas (Professor of Archaeology) who ironically was born in my home town of Epsom, Surrey is particularly inspiring:


‘[Archaeology] evokes notions of the repressed, the lost and the forgotten, and the drama of discovery which are often spatialised in terms of the relationship between depth and surface.’


The ceramic pieces I make draw inspiration from these notions of ancestry and generations. My collection ‘Uncovering my Roots’ is based upon three generations and individuals from my family: Thomas born in 1881, Charles born in 1844, and Mary born in 1810. My aim was to create a ‘family’ of objects, each one representing one of these eras, and collectively documenting the passage of time. When stood in sequence, the deteriorated surface of each piece peels to reveal the surface from the generation before.


These three pieces in particular celebrate British history and my heritage. They induce memories and a sense of nostalgia. They are reminiscent of archaeological relics, using historical British wallpapers, and forms to reveal the past and expose history. Each piece is unique evoking an emotional response from those who encounter them.


Claire Lovett - head shot