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Post by studio-pots on February 3rd 2019, 11:18 am

I don't get out to ceramic events as much as I did but yesterday I decided to venture elsewhere in S. E. London to what was billed as the Independent Ceramics Market - "with over 60 exhibitors this is the ideal location for discovering a new wave of early career & some more established ceramic artists". Entry was £1.


The reason that I am mentioning this is not because it wasn't as advertised but because it was so well attended by, as my images show, largely youngsters with me being the only person that I noticed being 50+ (and I am 50++). To be honest, if images of most of the work on show yesterday appeared on here under ID My Pottery, our general opinion would include the term "hobby potter".


Therefore it does seem as if there is a considerable growing interest in ceramics within the younger generation but I wonder how it would be possible to lead this generation of potential buyers to better quality work both currently produced and from the past?

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Post by denbydump on February 3rd 2019, 12:08 pm

Interesting SP. Did any of the wares catch your eye?
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Post by studio-pots on February 3rd 2019, 1:08 pm

One on the advertising did catch my eye but he is based near Brighton and cancelled because of the weather, which was disappointing. That was sculptor and perhaps not what you would think was of interest to me and so I was going there with an open mind. Interestingly, most of the items were for use and often brown or dull in colour. I did pick up things that were of my taste but generally they were not well made or lifeless. As I said these were generally people starting out and therefore their skills might improve.

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Post by NaomiM on February 3rd 2019, 1:30 pm

I’ve seen it advertised; was it Hackney? There’s also one that’s a cooperative if London hobby potters.
I think it’s all down to price, tbh. The buyers don’t realize there are items for sale in the £5-15 price range of much better quality at the main ceramics fairs

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Post by studio-pots on February 3rd 2019, 1:47 pm

It was Hackney Flea Markets running it but it was in Peckham. The point you make, Naomi, was my point that the price of these items were really no different from much better quality work at the main craft fairs. I was just wondered how people running the main fairs and contemporary galleries could reach this young audience?

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Post by studio-pots on February 3rd 2019, 1:55 pm

Also last month I went to something called "Top Drawer" at Olympia, as they offered me a free ticket and my new year's resolution is to get out more. It's a showcase for what they call "design-led brands across the lifestyle spectrum" and aimed a small shops and galleries. One very interesting point was that much of the new factory produced tableware on show from the large European manufacturers was clearly designed to look handmade and studio. It was also generally brown or muted in colour, which suggests brown pots are becoming on trend again!

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Post by 22 Crawford St. on February 3rd 2019, 2:22 pm

Young people at a ceramic fair, whatever next SP? Just imagine what would happen if Beyoncé was seen drinking from a Lisa Hammond mug or the Beckhams are pictured in Hello eating their dinner off a set by Ben Fosker? The market would go mad. Teenagers demanding LH for Christmas?

Much prefer the market just for us oldies, nice and quiet. NO KIDS ALLOWED!
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Post by dantheman on February 3rd 2019, 2:27 pm

Bah humbug!

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Post by NaomiM on February 3rd 2019, 3:03 pm

As I recall, the last Cermic Arts London was so full on its first day they had to turn people away and ask them to come back in the afternoon. But then they did have some big names giving lectures that day

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Post by studio-pots on February 3rd 2019, 4:25 pm

NaomiM wrote:As I recall, the last Cermic Arts London was so full on its first day they had to turn people away and ask them to come back in the afternoon. But then they did have some big names giving lectures that day


It could be that youngsters are interested but they don't have much spare cash? I know the events in central London do attract large numbers of young people but there the prices are "top dollar" and it could be that they assume that all quality ceramic fairs have similar prices, which isn't true?

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Post by NaomiM on February 3rd 2019, 5:27 pm

If you have a reputaion for being expensive then no amount of marketting is going to change that, especially when people walk in and there are £1000 teabowls and £2000 vases on one of the first stands you come to

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Post by brin mcardle on February 4th 2019, 1:50 am

jOHN...i went to the one at Hackney..and thought most of the stuff was a bit"hobby potter"...but the good thing was a lot of young people..mind it was Hackney
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Post by studio-pots on February 4th 2019, 8:29 am

Probably many of the same potters, Brin, and, although Peckham is south of the river it could be many of the buyers were the same too, as listening in on people's conversations suggested that many were not local.

So how do we get these young people to the 20th Century Forum to try and educate them?

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Post by philpot on February 4th 2019, 12:56 pm

http://www.hackneyfleamarket.com/calendar/

It seems as though they are held three times a year.
There is clearly a gap in the market. The likes of Collect and Ceramic Art are so high end as to be right out of reach of most ordinary people. Equally most of the other regular Ceramic Fairs are not held in large population urban areas.
The soubriquet 'hobby potter' is also a slightly scattergun name.
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Post by studio-pots on February 4th 2019, 2:31 pm

I think we started to use "hobby potter" because it sounded a little more positive than saying "amateur" or "evening class". I imagine that most of the people at the show on Saturday had learnt from "evening classes" or similar as there are really few other opportunities to learn techniques these days. Also I suspect with experience many will improve their work.

Regarding your main point, it is a fact in London at least that there is no real opportunity for good but not top potters to show their work at a fair or Market. If only I was younger, I might give it a go.

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Post by NaomiM on February 4th 2019, 3:10 pm

There are some very good and professional hobby potters but still making and firing at evening classes - the West Street Potters in Farnham are a prime example. The standard is very variable and none are making a living at it and most pieces are one offs or short runs.

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Post by 22 Crawford St. on February 4th 2019, 8:08 pm

John, Rosa Ramalho took up potting again when she was aged 68

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Post by studio-pots on February 5th 2019, 4:10 pm

My original comment about "hobby potters" was really to emphasis that there were crowds of young people willing to go out in London and pay to see what was really mostly poor to mediocre studio pottery. A point that Brin, who has been to a similar event, appears to agree with.


My reason for starting the thread was because I wondered how this interested audience could be lead to start looking at better quality work. By that I wasn't even meaning the important names but just skilled everyday potters that produced quality work...………………….. or even to be lead to this Forum to see what is available.

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Post by Mud Baker on February 5th 2019, 9:12 pm

fascinating.....maybe "young & hobby potter" is the new "black".....patience they will find ye or perhaps they need a 21st Century Forum. Beyonce drinking from a big pint Leach standard ware tankard would be quite something me thinks.
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Post by NaomiM on February 5th 2019, 10:42 pm

Happy to add their marks to the Studio Pottery section :)

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Post by studio-pots on February 5th 2019, 11:08 pm

NaomiM wrote:Happy to add their marks to the Studio Pottery section :)


Their marks were professional, at least the ones I saw, and a visit would add a few names to your database.

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Post by studio-pots on February 5th 2019, 11:09 pm

Mud Baker wrote:fascinating.....maybe "young & hobby potter" is the new "black".....patience they will find ye or perhaps they need a 21st Century Forum. Beyonce drinking from a big pint Leach standard ware tankard would be quite something me thinks.


None of the work on show was anywhere near your standard, MB!!

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