Thrown studio bowl, vase and bottle forms in stoneware or porcelain. Forms are simple but striking and rely on choice of clay, size and embellishment for their identity. Stoneware is thrown from clay stained with 3 oxides which bleed through the matte feldspathic glazes, porcelain forms are unglazed outside and embellished with blue green celadons and Derek Emms red glazes. All work is raw glazed and once fired in reduction in a gas kiln.
Availability of Work
Highgate Contemporary Art, 26 Highgate High Street, London N6 5JG
Suri and Akin, Handmade Interiors, 4 Formosa Street, London W9 1EE
National Galleries of Scotland, Edinburgh
Barnsbury Home, 14 North Street, Winchcombe, Cheltenham GL5 5LH
Caxton Books and Gallery, Frinton-on-Sea
And through shows (see website for details)
Work can also be seen and purchased from my studio.
I edit London Potters News and am an experienced writer and reviewer. I also have presented talks on several aspects of working as a potter and have demonstrated reduction firing and all aspects of production.
As a former management consultant, I am also experienced in coaching on all aspects of business, from marketing and promotion to production, pricing and selling.
All work is raw glazed with my own recipes and once fired in reduction in a gas kiln. All porcelain work is fired to 1300C and stoneware to 1225C.
I use oxides, not stains to achieve my colours and textures. My ingredients and materials are British, as are my recipe sources and tools.
Norman uses a British stoneware clay which he stains with manganese, copper and iron oxides. These oxides are pugged with the clay several times until they are blended and invisible until the pieces are fired. The bare clay then takes on a warm, brown, toasted colour and the oxides bleed through the matte feldspathic glazes to form swirls and variations in colour which are random and unpredictable.
For the porcelain versions of the forms, Norman uses British Porcelain Royale. The forms are not glazed on the outside but are either left smooth, etched or incised, all textures being to draw attention to the coolness and whiteness of the porcelain. The insides are glazed with blue green crackle and Jun glazes in up to 30 layers with some local embellishment in Derek Emms red. The thick glazes flux and move in the firing to soften the starkness of the form.
Norman’s current work also includes large porcelain bowls which are ultra thin for translucency. These are highly carved on the exterior and are lightly glazed inside to enhance the translucent walls of the pieces.
Norman’s bowls are either flat bottomed or footed, the latter being thrown at the same time as the bowl is made to ensure a smooth transition of line from body to foot. His pieces are characterised by their bevelled rims and altered forms which he creates by squeezing the bowl to create an undulating rim.
His bottle and vase forms are tall and may also be altered. Whether in stoneware or porcelain, these upright forms act as backdrops to the glazes.
Norman’s stoneware glazes are stiff, dry glazes which do not flux in the firing. His glazes are matte but allow the oxides in the clay to bleed through in order to create layers of colour and texture. His porcelain glazes are by contrast brilliant and liquid. Norman tries to build up these glazes at the top of the pieces in order to capture them in mid flux during the firing.
Norman uses a gas kiln to fire his pieces in a reduction atmosphere (where the oxygen content in the kiln is reduced) resulting in more lively colours as they do not oxidise as they would in an electric kiln. All his pieces are raw glazed and once fired in temperatures up to 1300C.
Previous career – management consultant and senior manager specialising in change delivery and business transformation, employers included BBC and Ernst & Young.
Self taught potter (4 years), shared studios with professional potters, studied widely, attends masterclasses to refine technique and develop designs.
Full time maker since 2006/7, first professional collection was sold in its entirety to one collector.
Council member of London Potters and Society of Designer Craftsmen.
Writer and editor of LP News, written work includes reviews, investigations into toxicity and profiles of professional potters.
Winner of LP Best Thrown Piece 2010.
2010 - Art in Islington
2010 - Bloomsbury Festival
2010 - Islington Art Festival
2010 - London Potters’ Members’ Show
(Award - Best thrown piece, London Potters’ Members’ Show 2010)
2011 - Origin at Spitalfields market, London
2011 - Handmade in Britain, Chelsea Old Town Hall, London
2011 - MADE11, Corn Exchange, Brighton, Sussex
2011 - Solo ceramics show with 3 painters at North Light Gallery, Huddersfield – Land and Sea
2011 - London Potters Members’ Show
2011 - Effervescence at West Dean
2012 - Mend Piece, an art installation by Yoko Ono, Gazelli Art House as part of fund raising for Japan post earthquake and tsunami
2012 - Craft Design Gallery, Leeds in March – invitation to be part of permanent collection of the gallery
2012 - Handmade in Britain at OXO Tower, May
2012 - Solo exhibition in private gallery in Bloomsbury,
2012 - MADE at Marylebone, London
2012 Handmade in Britain at Chelsea Old Town Hall
2012 - MADE12 at Brighton, Corn Exchange in November.
2012 - Effervescence at West Dean.
2013 - Society of Designer Craftsmen annual show, Mall Galleries, Pall Mall, London.
2014 - CRAFT at Earls Court (January)
2014 - Tate Britain (Turner Retrospective, September for 5 months)
2014 - Joint show with abstract artist Jonathan Davis, Bloomsbury Design, Judd Street, London WC1 (Mid October for 6 weeks)
2015 - CRAFT at Earls Court
Coast magazine, November 2011 (photo shoot of altered stoneware bowls)
Handmade Book – published by Vivays, profiles of British designers and makers.
London Potters News – Toxicity, August/September issue (article)
- various book and exhibition reviews.
- Profiles of Chris Keenan and Daniel Smith
- Commissioned series of articles to follow Ceramics in the City from planning to execution to post show analysis, in collaboration with the Geffrye Museum.