* North Devon Arts
Celebrating the Arts in North Devon
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AsterionCoeusA Cuppa and a Good BookFrog IThe GossipsBanjo ManTorso I

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Elizabeth Spiers

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Elizabeth Spiers

Artist's Statement

Art is my passion – from drawing and painting as a child, moving later to watercolours, pastels and oils, with clay eventually becoming my preferred medium. Ceramic sculpture now forms the overwhelming majority of my work.
Sometimes I begin a piece with a clear vision of what I want to achieve and at other times I start with a ball of clay and keep shaping it until it suggests a more defined idea. Working with clay reminds me of the unpredictability and randomness of life and this often shows itself in an understated sense of humour. I know a piece is ready for firing when it speaks to me.
I obtain a sense of being at one with a piece that is going well – a feeling that is very often reflected in the way that others comment upon it. I prefer my work to appear old or even ancient and tend to use my own glaze recipes, avoiding high gloss or bright colours – ‘recently excavated’ is a fair description of what I try to achieve. If the finished piece continues to speak to me I have been successful in my aims.

The classical mythologies are a rich source of ideas and my tendency to combine human and animal forms frees me from the constraints of classical figurative sculpture, enabling me to express myself both artistically and with the sense of humour that naturally finds its way into my work.
There are also many iconic images from the 20th and 21st centuries that I intend to celebrate in future work. Several of these are work-in-progress and will be finished shortly.
Combining contemporary style and ancient appearance is central to my current output and, like a medieval oak chest in a modern dwelling, makes my work blend perfectly with any environment.