This series of curated conversations, chaired by Tessa Peters, provides a platform for dialogue and discovery, bringing together a diverse range of artists whose practice uses clay and ceramics.

Each ‘Clay in Conversation’ event centres on a specific theme – acting as a lens through which the artists present a project. The conversations offer an opportunity to dig deeper into the work, exploring it formally, materially and conceptually, from the perspective of the artists themselves.

The presentations are followed by a Q&A session with the audience.

Clay in Conversation is curated by artist Julia Ellen Lancaster in partnership with the Ceramics Research Centre-UK (CREAM), University of Westminster.

This eighth conversation presents artists Barbara Beyer and Tessa Eastman.

Barbara Beyer is drawn to minimal and archaic forms, natural and manmade. Her work questions the consequences of our fundamental ability to shape, change and make.  Traces of process remain, and material qualities and potential are an essential part of her work.

Beyer lives and works in London, is member of the Royal Society of Sculptors, The London Group and is Studio Member at Rochester Square Ceramics in Camden.

Beyer’s recent exhibitions include:  2023 London Group Open, Copeland Gallery; Wells Art Contemporary 2023, site-specific installation Wells Cathedral;  Royal Society of Sculptors Summer Show, Dora House;  Wander_land at Tremenheere Sculpture Garden;  Warped Domesticities Stash Gallery; Congregation, Rebecca Newnham Studio, Tisbury;  On the Edge, Espacio Gallery, 2022; Wells Art Contemporary 22, gallery and site-specific installation Wells Cathedral; Catch your Breath, Waterloo Park; Together We Rise, Chichester Cathedral; unterwegs solo exhibition Northouse Gallery Manningtree

Tessa Eastman draws inspiration from forms seen through a microscope. She explores the strangeness of growth, where systems flow and digress. Her playful aesthetic results in abstract cloud-like formations and curiously ambiguous sea-like creatures. Their idiosyncratic shapes combine solid and open forms that are bulbous and interlaced, accretive and geometric, coarse and smooth, matt and glossy, pristine and weathered, all influenced by her research into glaze science

Eastman lives and works in London. She has worked with clay since a young age, gaining a BA in Ceramics at the University of Westminster and an MA Ceramics at The Royal College of Art. Eastman’s recent exhibitions include Crafting Circularity, The Art Workers Guild, 2023; The Orchard Collection of ceramics and glass, Christie’s, 2023; Cloudspotting, Jason Jaques Gallery, New York, 2019; Strangeness in Nature, Clifford Chance Gallery, London, 2018-19; Puls Contemporary Ceramics, Brussels, 2018.  

Tessa Peters is Senior Lecturer in the History and Theory of Art at University of Westminster and is a researcher, writer and independent curator. Julia Ellen Lancaster is an artist working out of London and Kent, UK. After graduating from the RCA, she spent time spent in Tokyo, exhibiting at Youkobo Arts Centre, Tokyo. She was subsequently selected for the Leach 100 Residency, St Ives, UK in 2020 as part of the Bernard Leach and Shoji Hamada pottery centenary celebrations. In 2021 she was awarded a further residency with Leach Pottery, at the historically significant Anchor studio, the original home of the Newlyn Art School. She is a member of the Royal Society of Sculptors and the Craft Potters Association.

Tickets available here.