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spirals of life smallspirals of life posterThe first month of this year's Artist-in-Residence scheme in Broomfield Conservatory was brought to a close with a very popular drop-in workshop, giving visitors an opportunity to learn how to create ceramic leaves.

Cathy Taylor's five-month residency goes by the overall title "Spirals of Life", each month having a different theme, but all within the overall concept of "biological sculptures".

Cathy's report on last Sunday's workshop:

"The ceramics leaf-making workshop in the Conservatory in Broomfield Park on Sunday was very successful, with both children and adults taking part side by side. There were around 20 participants, with people dropping in all afternoon, and no seat empty.  In fact, the conservatory was full of people either happily making or enjoying the atmosphere and the new sculptures in the central flower bed.

"Many beautiful leaves were made and coloured, and these will now be fired to go into the final exhibition. People were encouraged to add their initials to help them claim their work in June, but most of the leaves are unique as people developed their own individual style.

ceramics workshop leaves

"The photograph shows some newly-made leaves from the workshop. The leaves will now be fired, covered in clear glaze, and fired again to 1280 degrees. The colours will come much brighter."

Spirals of Life continues during March, when the theme will be "Fern, Frond, Spathe and Spadix".  Alongside Cathy's sculptures there will be many created by June Dawes.  As visitors enter the Conservatory, they will see June's arum lilies - made in two parts and assembled after firing - and behind them some tree fern spirals. And if you missed the large cheeseplant flower in the conservatory last year, you can see June 's replica near the lilies.

By the ferns there is a "fern ball", which Cathy made around a football - it had to be cut open, the football removed, then joined up again.  The clay ball was  impressed with real wild ferns from Cornwall.

The next workshop will take place on 24th April (2.30-4.30pm) and will teach people how to make fruits or seedpods from small, hand-made pots. There is no booking for this - just put the date in your diary and turn up!

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