Dawn Hurst

Ceramicist

"I graduated from the University of Central Lancashire with a first class honours degree in 3D Design. My main focus during this time was ceramics where my interest in the sagger and sawdust firing techniques first developed. I was intrigued and inspired by the limitless number of opportunities to explore and develop new and exciting methods.

My studies of ceramics over the years have helped me develop techniques that create strikingly beautiful colours, textures and intense patterns. The simplistic ceramic forms I have chosen serve as a canvas for the naturally created images they carry.

All of my work is bisque fired and then smoke/saggar fired. I have chosen not to rely on the usual ceramic slips, glazes and chemical treatments. Instead I incorporate natural materials in to the firing process, resulting in unique and unusual designs. I also create my own types of 'glazes' in which my pieces are dipped and soaked. These are produced by combining various materials and liquids.

For the firing process I use different amounts and mixtures of combustible materials. These can be packed either loosely or densely, meaning that the results always vary. The final result is affected by weather conditions, the dryness of the ceramics and surrounding materials together with the position in which the ceramic pieces are placed. I can control all of these factors to a certain extent but letting the totally natural process take hold is part of the excitement and adds uniqueness and individuality to each piece of work." Dawn Hurst