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Spotlight on Craft

As a gallery we have always exhibited finely crafted ceramics, textiles and sculpture alongside the contemporary paintings we’ve hung on the walls.  It is the very essence of what we do.  We are proud to represent a number of leading UK based makers today, many of whom have their works in museums and corporate collections both nationally and internationally.  We also extremely proud of the makers we show who are at the beginnings of what we hope will be long and fruitful careers in the craft world; many of which Cavaliero Finn has worked with since graduation.

So, let’s take a look first at Ashraf Hanna, a relatively new addition to the Cavaliero Finn portfolio.  At Collect earlier this year we added The Victoria and Albert Museum to both our list of clients and Ashraf’s, when the curatorial team at the V&A fell in love with a pair of Ashraf’s undulating vessels.

Ashraf is an Egyptian born British artist, resident and working in Wales.  His ceramic vessels start off as humble pinch pots which are then built up into a range of elegant sculptural forms featuring sharp lines and soft curves using a slab building technique.  The forms are then subtly coloured using many layers of slip, applied and fired in stages to achieve an incredible depth of colour.

Ashraf attended The Royal College of Art gaining an MA in ceramics and glass.  He received a major Creative Wales Award from the Arts Council of Wales and was awarded The British Glass Biennale Prize in 2015. In 2016 he obtained the ‘Crossover’ Award at the Emerge 2016 ‘Awards in Portland, Oregon, United States. Ashraf’s work is also in the National Museum of Wales and the permanent collection of the Royal Bank of Scotland.

Check out his work here or contact us about a commission.

Cavaliero Finn has worked with Annie Turner for a number of years now and has taken her work to the London Art Fair for the last two years.  Annie’s ceramic sculptures are very closely linked with the river Deben in Suffolk and its surrounding environment where she grew up.  The river’s past and present, the cycles of nature and the interaction of man are at the heart of each encrusted sculptural form she creates. These are, as she puts it ‘objects that trigger the memory’, as much collective memory as personal recollection.

Annie trained at Bristol Polytechnic and the Royal College of Art and has exhibited widely both nationally and internationally and teaches at The City Lit.

Her work is in the permanent collections at the Shipley Art Gallery, The National Museum Of Wales, Cardiff, The State University Buffalo New York U.S.A, The Grainer Collection U.S.A, The Fitzwilliam Museum, Cambridge and The Victoria and Albert Museum.
View available work on the website by Annie here or contact us to talk about a commission.

Matthew Chambers’ circular ceramic sculptures have been the cause of much curiosity at practically every show we’ve featured his work in for over ten years.  Both mathematically and technically challenging to comprehend, Matthew’s work continues to attract the attention of collectors wide and far. His work is in the permanent collection of the Fitzwilliam Museum, Cambridge, National Museum, Scotland, the Musée National de Céramique de Sévres, Paris and in private collections worldwide. Earlier this year one of Matthew’s sculptures was acquired by the Swiss national museum of ceramics – the Musée Ariana, Geneva.

Following a six year apprenticeship with Phillip Wood in Frome, Somerset, Matthew went on to gain a BA (Hons) 1st Class in ceramics at BSUC, Bath. He then went to the Royal College of Art, obtaining an MA in Ceramics and Glass. He has won numerous awards both in the UK and overseas including; The Ceramic Review Prize Awarded at Ceramic Art London and The Poole Pottery Award at New Designers.
See available works by Matthew Chambers here or contact us about a commission.

Akiko Hirai’s work is hugely respected in the ceramic world and is much sought after by ceramic collectors worldwide. Born in Japan in March 1970, Akiko initially studied cognitive psychology in Japan before coming to England where she took a degree course in ceramics at the University of Westminster, graduating from Central St. Martins. Until recently Akiko was Head of Ceramics at Kensington and Chelsea College but due to the huge demand for her work she now works full time on her ceramic pieces in her studio.

Akiko juxtaposes traditional Japanese ceramic traditions with British traditions resulting in a work, truly unique in texture and appearance. When creating each piece, she allows the clay to ‘speak for itself’ and the results are raw, textured and truly stunning.

One of the artist’s most outstanding pieces are her Moon Jars (featured at the top of this post). The Moon Jar is a Korean white porcelain jar made during the mid 17th to mid 18th century in the late period of the Josean Dynasty. The name comes from its moon-like appearance in shape and milky glaze colour. Akiko brings her own unique modern day experimentation to this jars which appear to have a volcanic glaze streaming down the sides and encrusted on the surface, like a ‘whitewater’ river bubbling over rocky river beds.

Akiko’s work is part of the permanent collection at the Keramikmuseum Westerwald (Westerwald Ceramic Museum), Germany.

View available work by Akiko here or contact us for a commission

Cavaliero Finn has worked with Michelle House on and off for a number of years, Creating unique one-off, hand-painted and printed wall hangings, textile panels, and large, site-specific pieces, Michelle’s unique abstract style is easily recognisable, with darting black lines that wind and weave their way across the surface of colour-drenched fabrics.

Earlier this year Michelle hand-printed and painted two large hangings that are now installed in the British Academy building in St James’s, London as part of its permanent collection.
The hangings are made from a combination of linens and cottons and incorporate imagery from the internal architectural details and library within the space.  Her work joins a very prestigious collection which also includes work by Cavaliero Finn artist Matthew Chambers.

View available work by Michelle here or contact us for a commission

Ikuko Iwamoto is a Japanese artist living in London who we’ve worked with for over ten years.  Her intricate sculptural pieces are made from finely crafted porcelain and have an uncompromising purity that is captivating. Inspired by the microscopic world, she describes her work as, “a world of intricacy and detail, of mathematical pattern and organic chaos, of beauty and repulsion.”

Ikuko began her education in ceramics in 1990 when she enrolled on the Crafts and History (Ceramic) course at Tezukayama College, Japan. After this, she became her ceramics tutor’s assistant, while also teaching ceramic design at other colleges. In 2001, on the recommendation of her tutor, she left Japan to study in London. She studied first at Camberwell College of Art, before completing her MA in 2006 at the Royal College of Art.

Ikuko has won numerous awards including the Ceramic Review Prize for Innovation at Ceramic Art London. Her work is in several public collections including the V&A and Manchester Art Gallery.

View available work by Ikuko here or contact us for a commission

We came across Bjork Haraldsdottir’s ceramics during Dorset Art Weeks two years ago, being instantly attracted to their strong sculptural forms and geometric patterns.

Originally from Iceland, Bjork Haraldsdottir’s ceramic vessels explore the conversation between the pseudo perfection of geometric pattern and the tactile impurity of hand modelled clay.  In each vessel she deliberately creates warped planes through careful pattern cutting and jointing of would-be flat slabs of clay so that her vessels become slightly off kilter, beguiling the viewer.  The strong geometric patterning and both natural and architectural forms that make Bjork’s work instantly recognisable is heavily influenced by her past. The artist studied architecture at The Glasgow School of Art (where she collected the Glasgow Sliver Medal for Architecture) and worked in the industry for over 20 years for a number of renowned architects including Richard Rogers before exploring her passion for ceramic forms. She works with the clay as she trained, pieces are planned and drawn before they are made and made as they are conceived – glass and steel have long since been replaced by clay.

At the end of last year Bjork’s work was selected by fine artist and furniture designer, John Makepeace OBE as winner of the Applied Arts Prize at the Marshwood Arts Awards (2017). She has recently been selected for the Royal Academy Summer Exhibition 2018 co-ordinated by Grayson Perry.
View available work by Bjork here or contact us for a commission

These are just a small selection of some of the makers we represent.  In our portfolio you’ll find examples of the highest craftmanship do feel free to have browse on the site