White Shadows

Porcelain is the perfect material to convey the delicate features of many of the flowers planted in the grounds of Russborough House were I have my studio. I find myself drawn to the intricacy of plants, examining the veins of a leaf, how its edges are shaped, and the layering of a flower’s petals. 

A magnificent white clematis, planted by Lady Beit, is the inspiration behind a series of decorative, unglazed wall pieces and a large glazed decorative table centre piece. Each dome shaped base is covered with individual handmade flowers and leaves.....a collage....a permanent bouquet. The material used is grogged porcelain flax paper clay and the work is left to dry for about 4 weeks. Glazing takes place at this stage and all pieces are fired once to 1260 degrees centigrade.

The poet Diarmuid Johnson wrote a poem celebrating this wonderful clematis and the pieces were accepted into the ‘Art of Clay - All Fired Up’ exhibition which ran during the IAC conference in Dublin in September 2014.

White Shadows

Every Year

On the sun-drenched wall

We waited for shadow

As though the summer light,

Proud but alone,

Were not enough to charm the eye.

Soon then, out of the distant sky,

A hundred wings grow and grow

Until cascading low,

They found a wall, a sundrenched wall,

And, gladdening the cloudy eye,

Became a hundred blooms.

Now the wings and shadow dance

And summer light

Is deeper than a sigh.

Diarmuid Johnson.