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Chris Donnelly

Chris Donnelly
  • Work
  • Biography
Chris studied ceramics in Calgary and Nova Scotia, Canada. He makes tableware from his studio Cyan Clayworks in Edinburgh.

His intention is to bridge the rich industrial ceramic heritage in the UK with surfaces and formal considerations developed through the British and American Studio Pottery movements. His focus is to create objects to enhance contemporary cooking, eating and drinking experiences. How a vessel works on a practical level is important; he pays a lot of attention to details such as feet, handles, and weight. For him, pots should not only be practical but beautiful objects in their own right.

The surface is important too; often his work includes hand printed lino patterns, slip decoration or richly glazed surfaces.

Although predominantly a wheel thrower, his work has shifted recently to more industrial processes. He restored a jigger jolley machine in 2017, and it has become his primary mode of making. This is a niche piece of equipment, usually only found in ceramic factories rather than a small studio. A useful way to describe it is as ‘mechanical throwing’. Original models and plaster moulds are made with a hand cut template to shape the inside. Repeatable forms are made in small batches.
Education
Bachelor of Fine Arts, Alberta College of Art and Design, Calgary Alberta
1995 – 1999

Teaching and Work Experience
Instructor and studio member, Cyan Clayworks, Edinburgh
2012 – present
Technician, Design and Technology Department, Edinburgh Academy, Edinburgh
2007 – 2016
Visiting Lecturer, University of Sunderland, Sunderland
2006

Exhibitions
Flow, Visual Arts Scotland, Edinburgh/Online
2020
Functional and the Narrative, Whitespace Gallery, Edinburgh
2019
Human, Cupola Gallery Sheffield
2018
Open Studios at Beaverhall Art Studios, Edinburgh Scotland
2019, 2018, 2017, 2016, 2015
Potfest at Scone Palace Perthshire, Scotland
2012
Festive Exhibition Caledonian Language School, Edinburgh
2011
Adam Pottery Showcase, Scottish Art Club, Edinburgh
2010
The Edinburgh Festival Fringe, The Adam Pottery, Edinburgh
2003 – 2011
Open Ceramic Exhibition RBSA Gallery, Birmingham
2009
Opulence mixed winter exhibition RBSA Gallery, Birmingham
2008
Rarefind Winter Jewellery and craft, New Ashgate Gallery, Farnham
2008
Mixed Winter Exhibition, Gallery Heinzel, Aberdeen
2008
Visual Arts Scotland, Annual Open Exhibition, Edinburgh
2008, 2007
Pittenweem Arts Festival, Pittenweem
2007, 2006, 2005

Craft Fairs
Out of the Blue Christmas Fair, Edinburgh
2019
Art Walk Porty, Portobello, Edinburgh
2019
Handmade Oxford at Waterperry Gardens, Oxford
2019
Glow at the Dovecot, Edinburgh
2018
Edinburgh Art Fair with Saorsa Gallery, Edinburgh
2018
Handmade in Edinburgh at the Royal Botanic Gardens, Edinburgh
2018
Design Market at Fruitmarket Gallery, Edinburgh
2015
Great Northern Contemporary Craft Fair, Manchester
2010
Potfest in the Pens, Penrith
2008

Residencies
The Shaw International Centre for Contemporary Ceramics, Medalta Centre, Medicine Hat Alberta Canada
2014
Artist Access to Art Colleges National Scheme,
University of Sunderland, Sunderland,
2006 – 2007
Stalactite Cups with matt turquoise glaze
  • Chris Donnelly
  • Stalactite Cups with matt turquoise glaze
  • Ceramics
Trumpet cups with Orange Julius glaze
  • Chris Donnelly
  • Trumpet cups with Orange Julius glaze
  • Ceramics
Wedge cup with satin matt glaze
  • Chris Donnelly
  • Wedge cup with satin matt glaze
  • Ceramics
Lidded crock with lugs and midnight blue glaze
  • Chris Donnelly
  • Lidded crock with lugs and midnight blue glaze
  • Ceramics

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