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Background

Following an apprenticeship at Farnham Potteries, Wrecclesham ( 1974-75), Chris moved to South Heighton in Sussex. The pottery was originally established by Ursula Mommens in 1951.

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Chris fires his work in a large single chamber “anagama” kiln based on a design that has been in use all over the Far East for hundreds of years. Pots are fired to a temperature of 1300°C. The wood is often in direct contact with the pots, which get covered in ash and embers during the course of the three to four day firings. This method of firing although unpredictable, can often result in beautiful rich surface colour and texture that give the work an almost archaeological character. Work is either thrown on a wheel, or made with a combination of throwing and hand building techniques.

Chris’s domestic pottery is either hand painted or sgraffito decorated with multiple layers of slip to provide depth of colour and tone. The extended firing further adds to the variations in colour and texture.

Archaeology and the artifacts made by vanished or disappearing cultures has an abiding influence on Chris's work. Regular visits to the ethnographic departments of museums and frequent travel to Africa, Asia and America, where he makes a point of searching out fellow makers, have informed and nourished his own work.

Chris exhibits regularly in galleries and shows throughout the UK and mainland Europe. His large scale pieces have been featured in architectural and garden design projects internationally.

View the work of Chris Lewis