Tuesday, June 3, 2008

Broken Plates.


Digging in the garden I am for ever finding small shards of old French pottery which I collect in a most un feng shui fashion to clutter my studio with. I love the tiny glimpses of design and wonder at what the complete plate might have looked like and the stories that lie behind their destruction. Was it a child who dropped it on the unforgiving slate floor perhaps or part of a cherished dinner set the loss of which caused many tears? In my minds eye I can imagine some sunlit family celebration in summer the plates all placed with joy on long trestle tables laid with white cloths under the apple trees in the orchard and how one dish may have shattered at some small piece lost in the earth for me to find over a century later.

Even on holiday I trawl the tide line looking for lost fragments of peoples past lives. Never sure what quite to do with them but happy to find these serendipitous shards of beauty. One of my favourite pieces is no bigger than a child's finger tip with a small floral design in red which I found in a river one hot day in the Pyrenees Orientalle. It is so small with barely a hint of the full picture , just one corner of a flower with petals like the suns rays, but I love it . It is that little remnant of broken dish that inspired me to make some ceramic pendants recently to hang on leather thongs. And here they are, an attempt to capture something of the original design and transport it into something beautiful and wearable.

I had so much fun making them that I went on to make some crosses in similar designs and had great fun making intricate little patterns with my brush and glazes. Each is only about 4.5 cm long and I am now thinking about earrings in porcelain . I wonder what the owner of the original plate would think to see them!

For more pictures and further deatils you can go to my shop front

http://www.notonthehighstreet.com/unpeuloufoque/product/ceramic_pendant


12 comments:

LittleBrownDog said...

Hey, UPL - don't mess with Feng Shui! Seriously, though, I have a huge collection of little pieces of china unearthed mostly from the gardens of where we've lived. I tell myself I'm going to make a lovely mosaic one day, although when I'm ever going to get round to it... I agree, they are fascinating and often very beautiful. And I just love the pendants they've inspired - just gorgeous.

Exmoorjane said...

Haven't found this blog before - very lovely. I love those little shards of pottery too, especially when softened by the sea. Always intend to do something clever with them but never do.

Pipany said...

I LOVE these UPL, particularly the red and white ones. So pretty and softly vibrant - love oxymorons - too.
Hey, don't worry about me being down - I'm back on the up!Thanks for the happy wishes though as they are always welcome. Time I stopped moaning anyway! xx

Frances said...

These pendants are great designs. The scale is wonderful, just enough intricacy to catch the eye, just like the tiny found fragment that you described.

Un Peu, I think that you are on to yet another winner here!

Best wishes.

Inthemud said...

I used to collect old pieces of china as a child, loves all the wonderful colours and as you say used to wonder about the history. Even had a china display in my garden one year.

Lovely pictures!

Crystal Jigsaw said...

Really pretty designs. I also enjoy finding little pieces of people's lives from long ago. We often have archeologists on our land and it's fascinating what they are able to dig up.

CJ xx

lampworkbeader said...

I've often wondered how pieces of china end up buried in a garden. The garden I lived in as a child was absolutely stuffed with cracked and broken pieces of pottery. We even found an almost complete ornament, a girl holding a goose in her lap, but the head was broken off.
I love your pendants, so dainty and pretty.

Grouse said...

Like some of the others, I spent hours digging for china remnants as a child- never thought other children did the same! What a perfectly lovely idea to make something with the designs

Elizabethd said...

The things you make get prettier every time.
My passion is shells, but only tiny ones. I have shells from beaches all over the world, and it is the little pink and cream ones, tiny little things, that bring back memories of a Hawaian or an Aussie beach.

ChrisH said...

Phew! You are in full creative flow, aren't you? I have to say if it was me I'd be picking bits up, thinking 'Oh, that's nice' then throwing them back in the sea or wherever - you are clearly far more artistic.

Ellie said...

What lovely pieces - I'll definitely visit your shop. I'm always finding little pottery shards too - usually in blue and white. Love your blog - will be back again soon!

Cait O'Connor said...

Just gorgeous UPL. I love these and like lots of us I save little pieces of china that I unearth.