Planning my For-ever Studio

It’s a scary thought but the studio that I am planning at the moment is meant to last me a lifetime!  So I kind of need to get it right.  Previously there has been an element of making do with the space that I had and be thankful for having it.

Not much room to throw a pot here!
The space I have in which to work has grown over time from half a little tiny space to the whole of that space to double that space.  But it has never been my space – someone else has held the lease; determined where the lighting, cupboards, windows were; made unhealthy decisions on the amount of insulation that artists need in the walls and floors of their work-space!  (I know where the cold goes when the weather warms up in Cornwall now – My studio is the original heat sink!)


This time, I am going to have to decide for myself where are the best places for work surfaces, cupboards, the sink and the shelves.

Not much of a view!

Windows and plumbing are already sorted – I didn’t want a great view because I knew that it would distract me and I did want great plumbing because I know what clay does to U bends!  But the rest of it!  So much space, so many possibilities!


If you visit the Victoria and Albert Museum you can see a mock-up of Lucy Rie‘s studio.  It is quite a compact space – much smaller than I am about to have – and within it she created the most beautiful work.  Size is not everything!  So I need to bear in mind that it is not where you create but what you create that is important.  I do not want to let the new super-space to go to my head but, on the other hand, given that I can arrange it as I want, I might as well have it as I want it.  Decisions, decisions!

Lucy Rie making magic in her Studio.

Week 2 of My Favourite Things.

This month I am enjoying spending a moment or two with some of my favourite potters.  This week is it the turn of Lucy Rie.

I  came across her when my sister gave me a book on her work and I look back now and feel ashamed that it had taken me so long to discover such a rich and wonderful selection of work!

The introduction to Tony Birk’s book on her life and work comments on her willingness to try new things and to ‘combine her experience and intuition with radical experiment’,

Lucy Rie: Tony Birk, Stenlake Publishing Ltd, 1987.

I love the idea that a thrower with as much skill as she had who was content to ignore serious wobbles and manipulate exhausted clay into a shape and I find myself wondering how far Lucy Rie would have got on the Great British Throw Down!

Here, for your enjoyment are a few of her pieces:

Here is the only bit of video about her that I can find and post here, although, if you can find time to visit the Victoria and Albert Museum you can watch an enchanting video of her talking to Sir David Attenborough about her work and see a reconstruction of her studio.  What comes through in all her work is the message to keep things simple – something we would all do well to remember!