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Days of Clay – Sat 23 Nov 2019

Join York Art Gallery, home to the most significant collection of British Studio Ceramics in the UK, for the annual Days of Clay, in collaboration with the York Ceramics Fair at the Hospitium in York Museum Gardens.

This year’s event has been extended to a whole weekend of hands-on opportunities, workshops, talks and performance art. Perfect for the whole family! Events include:

Saturday 23rd November

Artist Susan Halls in the Studio/ 10:30– 16:30
Come and help fill part of the gallery with a crowd of watchful clay rabbits. Animal sculptor Susan Halls will be running a hands on workshop showing you a quick and effective way to make a hollow rabbit that will form part of her ‘Meadow’ installation.

Annual Coca Lecture 2019: Alison Britton OBE
TICKETED EVENT – available on Eventbrite https://tinyurl.com/y2u6l8ke

Doors open 5:45pm / Lecture starts 6pm / Q & A 6:45pm
Drinks in Gillian Lowndes Exhibition 7pm
Close 8pm

Alison Britton was part of a group of radical women artists graduating from the Royal College of Art’s ceramics course in the early 1970s. In 1993, Britton co-curated The Raw and the Cooked with Martina Margetts, at the Barbican and Modern Art Oxford, which then toured in East Asia and Europe. In her lecture, Britton will reflect on this exhibition and on being part of an emergence of a radical abstract expressionist style of ceramic work. This year’s Annual CoCA Lecture will take place at York Art Gallery and ticket holders will have the opportunity to visit CoCA’s new exhibition Gillian Lowndes: At The Edge after the lecture, where drinks will also be on sale.

Sunday 24th November

In the CoCA 1 at York Art Gallery

Clay Participatory Performance /  13:00 – 15:00
Join performers Milena Dragic and Mila Romans as ‘artist’ and ‘clay’ as they sculpt out clay movements and then invite you to participate in making, looking and moving clay to become part of the performance.

Talk: Making Emmanuel Cooper / 15:30 – 16:30

David Horbury discusses how editing Emmanuel Cooper’s memoirs has provided fresh insights into his pots and practice. David’s book on Emmanuel will be on sale in the shop and he will be available to sign them.

In the Studio at York Art Gallery

The Life of a Slipware Potter / 11:30 – 12:30
Join renowned potter Doug Fitch and his wife Hannah, for a talk about their lives as slipware potters, followed by a hands on session where you can try out slip trailing yourself.

Texture and carving workshop / 14:00 – 15:30
Hand building with artist Wendy Lawrence, get the opportunity to get hands on and do some carving and texturing with clay and take your work home with you.

In the CoCA 2 at York Art Gallery

Children Curate in conversation with Anthony Shaw and artist Susan Halls / 11:30 – 12:30
Meet the collector and the artist who helped inspire the children who curated the current Anthony Shaw Collection display.

Alison Britton in conversation with Anthony Shaw / 14:30 – 15:30
Following her Annual CoCA Lecture (Saturday 23rd Nov, 6pm), Alison will be talking with Anthony Shaw about the practice and work of Gillian Lowndes in CoCA’s new exhibition ‘Gillian Lowndes: At the Edge’.

Burton gallery at York Art Gallery

Book Reading: The Ups and Downs in the Life of the Fabulous Bernard Palissey/ 14:00 – 15:00
Join Jane Hamlyn for a reading of a quaint little book about the 16th century French Huguenot potter Bernard Palissy and his desperate struggles to discover the lost secrets of Italian tin-glazed earthenware.

Film Showing/ 15:00 – 16:00

Watch a screening of POTSHOTS – starring Johnny Vegas as Bernard Palissy. Produced by Roger Law and Anya Course. Running time: 25 minutes. Jane will be available to answer any questions.

Both Saturday 23rd/ Sunday 24th  November

Installation: The Downfall of the Tower of Pots
The tower of pots was created by artist Lou Gilbert Scott and visitors during our ‘Day of Clay’ event last year. We now invite you to watch as it slowly dissolves, returning to soft malleable clay ready for re-use.

Hands on Here
Get hands on with our historic and contemporary ceramic collection, sessions usually run between 11:00-13:00 and 13:30-15:30

Children’s ceramic trail available at front desk all day.

Event details


Saturday 23 November 2019–Sunday 24 November 2019, All Day


York Art Gallery,
Exhibition Square
North Yorkshire

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