Hannah Tounsend


Cavaliero Finn was first introduced to Hannah Tounsend’s beautiful ceramic sculptures by Robin Cawdron Stewart, who was deputy director at Sothebys at the time and who has bought from the gallery previously. Her beautiful sculptures combine ceramics and printmaking to create collections of sensitively realised vessel forms and subtly layered monoprints that explore the layered landscapes and sea-washed, weatherworn surfaces of the British coastline. Marks, lines and diffuse merging colours are built up, cut through and dissolved away. The repeatedly worked surfaces of clay and print are under constant revision, referencing the endless remaking of the shore.


She has developed an unusual, hybrid making technique to form her contemplative vessel pieces. Within an open plaster mould she builds layers of printed, poured and painted casting slips, overlaying colours on the porous surface. These designs are incorporated into a cast shell of clay, before mould and cast are fixed centrally to a throwing wheel. A partially thrown cylinder of plastic clay is joined to the cut rim of the still-moulded cast and fully thrown out. The presence of the mould allows the formation of a flange of clay that accentuates the join and breaks away in irregular fragments as the piece shrinks and pulls inwards.


Inspired by the shore, her ceramic vessels are heavy with the banding of a tiered landscape. The static cast portions of the pieces are representative of solid land, the flowing thrown porcelain a liquid tide with a disintegrating, uppermost edge akin to a smudged horizon. In this way the horizontal boundaries within the vessels echo and resonate with the elemental strata of the coast.


Hannah studied at the De Montfort University obtaining a distinction for her MA Fine Art by Independent Study – ‘An Exploration of the Ceramic Surface’.  She also completed her first class BA Hons Ceramics and Glass there.  Later this year Hannah will find out if she has won AWARD which is the British Ceramics Biennial’s exhibition and prize which focuses on extraordinary new works being produced by some of the UK’s most talented artists working with ceramics. A specially convened panel has selected ten artists for representation in the exhibition, of which Hannah is one, the AWARD winner will be given a cash prize of £10,000 for excellence, innovation and creative ambition.


Recent Awards
2018: ‘Newcomer Award’ winner, Ceramic Art London.
2016: ‘New Designers One Year On Award’, New Designers, Islington.
2015: ‘FRESH’ winner, The British Ceramics Biennial.
2015: ‘Snug Gallery Showcase Award’, The Great Northern Contemporary Craft Fair.
2015: ‘John Lewis Loves Commendation’, New Designers.
2015: ‘Student Award’, The Leicester Society of Artists.


Recent Bursaries and Memberships
2017: ‘QEST Scholar Award’ Royal Warrant Holders Association.

2016: ‘Professional Development Bursary’, The Artist Information Company.
2016: ‘David Canter Memorial Fund, Bursary for Printmakers’, Devon Guild of Craftsmen.
2016: ‘Hothouse Development Programme’, The Crafts Council.
2016: ‘Residency at International Ceramic Research Centre, Denmark’, The British Ceramic Biennial.
2016: ‘Crucible Programme Bursary’, De Montfort University.
2016: ‘Professional Member’, Craft Potters Association


See Our Feature on Hannah Tounsend