BCB artist in training programme – world in one city

Monday morning’s spoon making session with Jo Ayre at the BCB studio was fantastic. The group created some wonderful pieces in response to our discussion on feasting. We spoke about the food we would use our spoons for; rice, dulma, tabbouleh and stew, being the favourites, then we began planning our picnic. This will be an event where we can share our favourite dishes and feast together, using the ware that we will be creating in the studio.
I felt a real sense of empowerment from the participants in Monday’s session. The group have clearly taken a lot from the workshops so far. Their skills and knowledge have improved vastly, with the group taking ownership of their work, and the confidence of the group is clearly growing.
‘I could have never imagined making the things I have made’
‘We have discovered a new world through clay’
  said Sabbah.
Our afternoon was spent at Middleport pottery. The tour was a great insight into the heritage of Stoke-on-Trent, and I believe the group were surprised at how much they already knew about a working pottery and the history of the city.
I feel very grateful to be part of such a wonderful project. Assisting Jo with her work has been really insightful and inspiring for the improvement of my artist practice. I have learned a great deal from the way that she works, especially with people. Her warm, welcoming attitude, good communication and clear instruction are essential. Her work is explorative yet tailors to the groups needs. With feasting being the key inspiration for this project, the group will automatically feel a sense of belonging as we discuss something so relevant to each and every culture. Linking food with the heritage of Stoke-on-Trent is vital for the group to feel welcome and to learn about the city they find themselves living in. During the session, the group spoke about the great teamwork, and how their confidence growing every week and the supportive, warm nature of the BCB team and the fellow group members. Two of the group members commented
‘Our relationships with each other, Stoke-on-Trent and clay are growing each week’
Usman.
“I am so happy to be a part of this. Thank you!”
Abosde.

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