Earth & Sky on The Platform

Saturday 12th June - Wednesday 23rd June 2021


An exhibition of Textiles and Landscape Paintings by Donna Slyfield and Stoneware Ceramics by Annette Cole and Carol Metcalfe.

Annette Cole lives on the edge of the Yorkshire Dales. After many years attending part-time ceramics courses whilst working as a pharmacist, her fascination with clay led her to do a degree in Contemporary Ceramics at Newcastle College.

Annette's love of clay and gardening come together in the creation of bird baths, planters and sculptures for the garden and smaller pieces suitable for both indoors and out. The natural world around her provides inspiration for the forms and surfaces and they reflect her love of colour and texture.

Annette fires to a high stoneware temperature in order that the pieces can survive outside. To ensure that her practice has as low an environmental impact as possible, solar panels provide electricity for the kiln firings and she makes her own glazes, recycling as much of the glaze and clay as she can.

Carol Metcalfe works with two themes; the landscapes around her home in North Yorkshire; and texture created by leaves, weed seeds and found objects collected locally, which she incorporates into her clay. Thus, Carol’s ceramic pieces have a strong sense of place. Some of the landscapes are torn and reassembled, Carol’s response to the challenges the countryside has faced over the years, scarred but enduring.

Carol studied Arts and Design at the University of Sunderland, specialising in ceramics. She then went on to do a PhD, researching New Ash Glazes from Arable Crop Waste. The resulting glazes are employed in all her ceramic work. They contain waste plant material collected after harvest on the farm where Carol lives, near Richmond, and are fired to a low stoneware temperature of 1240C. A small wind turbine on the farm, supplies much of the electricity used by the kiln further minimising the environmental impact of production.

Donna Slyfield uses fabric, collage, machine stitching and screen printing to create unique, one-off pieces in a subtle seductive colour palette on fabric and paper. Her love of colour, texture and simple line are focused and translated into sensitive interpretations of movement and space inspired by water and the north east coastline. Born and living in the North East of England all her life, childhood memories of day trips to the North East coast have inspired much of Donna’s work. Although Donna uses words to tantalise a deeper meaning, her work is intentionally void of figurative meaning so as to draw the viewer in and evoke an interaction of familiarity.

Though she is a BA Hons. Graduate in Textiles and Surface Pattern, Donna’s work owes little to the formalities of fabric printing but stretches the textile processes into an art form that embeds an emotive response.

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