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about Lincoln Kirby Bell | back

Australian born Lincoln was first introduced to clay at the young age of 4. His father would bring clay home from the farm dam and fashion farm animals from it on the kitchen table. Some years later this interest was built upon by his mothers’ appreciation of antique china and pottery she sold in her antique shop. Add to this an active interest in archaeology and an inspiring high school art teacher and a career in ceramics would ensue.

Since completing a degree in ceramic design in 1983 He has worked full time as a studio potter in a number of countries, carried out some teaching, and worked on a number of archaeological excavations with a ceramic component. He enjoys making work that is witty and fun and can be used every day, works that show individuality, the processes of their creation and hopefully reflect a sense of time and place. The ceramics he makes almost entirely revolve around the concept of ‘vessels’ or objects that can be used to eat and drink from or contain something. His work is very decorative and distinctive due to the decorating techniques he employs, which give a raised/ textured surface to the decoration. The exuberant use of colours or bold black and white designs extensively covering the surfaces of his work, add to the overall effect. The aesthetic elements are as important to him as the functional considerations, the two coming together to create a uniquely individual object.

The roots of his decorating techniques lie in the 16th/17th centuries’ slip trailed wares of English folk potters such as the Toff and Simpson families, the last such work produced in England before the advent of the Industrial Revolution when everything in ceramics became mechanised and mass produced. His decoration is largely inspired by basic design elements that can be found in all ancient civilizations- spots, spirals, circles, linear patterns and stripes. Whether it is just pattern or imbued with meaning is another story!

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