Totally turned on by the medium of clay and the broad practice of ceramics, I have, over the years, been involved in education, curated exhibitions, written articles, run workshops, held solo shows, participated in guest residencies, conferences and forums and presented lectures. Generally – my clay addiction has enabled me to travel the world. I’ve seen and collected a lot of fabulous pots and met many fascinating makers and collectors.
Whilst still a practicing potter experimenting with functional work, mostly in porcelain, my current research interests are in exploring cooking with clay traditions. Sourcing and collecting (and where necessary, recreating) earthenware clay cooking pots from around the world that are still used on a daily basis on an open flame, has become an obsession. Seeking out and acquiring traditional working earthenware (and some stoneware) pots that are designed to be used on an open wood or gas fire – in the wood fired oven and the fireplace – as clay tabletop grillers and charcoal fired clay braziers; as tandoors, hornos and chimineas has become an even greater obsession. I’m intrigued to know how these vessels are made and used and the stories that are embedded in their brittle walls.
The still growing collection resides in our island ‘shack’ on Bruny – Bruny Island in the D’Entrecasteaux Channel off the south eastern coast of Tasmania. Here, in combination with the produce of the island, the pots, along with the wood fired oven, the hangi style firepit and the Japanese inspired iori, cooking with fire, food and clay occurs.
Come along for the ride………..
(To check out full CV: PENNY SMITH)