Pulped Fiction at Bloomsbury Festival
Parasite Ceramics ventured into the field of the written word and found it to be a wonderful and heartwarming experience.We knew that Bloomsbury was full of great literary writers from the past, but we wanted to hear from aspiring writers from the present, with new perspectives of the local area.
We were really impressed with the response we received from local residents who signed up for our creative writing workshops, with new characters created
and familiar places reimagined. We were also pleased that the outcomes were so varied, from science fiction and historical fiction to thrillers. We were so pleased
in fact, that we immediately destroyed all their original scripts, and pulped it into clay. Their words were transformed into paper clay tiles and the text transferred back onto the surface. We also used the paper clay to cut out small scenes that reflected the origins of their work, Dicken’s Bleak House, and memories from
a reminiscence group at the Holborn Community Association. This was all housed in our pop-up studio at the Bloomsbury Festival, with new visitors interacting
with the multiple narratives on display throughout the whole weekend.
For more information about Bloomsbury Festival please visit Festival website.
Creative Ceramics workshop at The British Museum
Parasite Ceramics spent a very enjoyable day in the belly of the British Museum teaching a creative ceramic workshop. As part of a programme for the Tomb of the Unknown Craftsman, the wonderfully curated and crafted exhibition by Grayson Perry, we explored the themes of personal journeys, personalities and culture. Participants slip-cast, white earthenware cups and decorated them with coloured slips to create elements that revealed personal narratives, just like Grayson Perry uses on his own pots. And of course, the workshop could not be a success without the omnipresent Alan Measles, Grayson’s childhood teddy bear. Participants had the opportunity to make their very own ceramic teddy bear and enter into the eccentric world of the artist and his musings.
Images by Benedict Johnson
Seven Lamps of Brunswick Square
For Bloomsbury Festival 2011 we created a bone china installation high up in a tree of Brunswick Square. The artwork uses the text, “The Seven Lamps of Architecture” by John Ruskin, as a starting point, for revealing the many stories in the local area. Ruskin, born on Hunter Street beside Brunswick Square, wrote the critical essay to establish the basic principles necessary in architecture as conceived by the human spirit. Principles of Sacrifice, Truth, Power, Beauty, Memory, Life and Obedience.
We have recontextualised Ruskin’s seven principles as narratives that signify the life of Brunswick Square; the story of Queen Caroline of Brunswick and the children of Foundling Hospital are some examples. Each of the seven stories will be represented by an object and hung in clusters from a tree in the North-West corner of the square.
We are currently taking up a craft residency in Hurst Green, Surrey with the Arts Council funded project, Making Surrey. It is a land of green pastures and lovely people who have all gone out of their way to support the work we have put in so far. Larger than a village, but not quite a town, Hurst Green lacks in things we at Parasite take for granted, such as coffee shops, banks, and marketplaces. But it makes this up in a strong community environment involving the churches, youth partnerships and local schools. We believe it is a healthy, thriving place full of ideas and action. What we are currently doing is teaching residents of all ages to make clay artworks that will benefit the community in some way. We don’t quite know what this will be yet, but you will definitely be able to find out here when it does. For more information on our work in Hurst Green, and the wider Making Surrey project, please follow http://makingsurrey.wordpress.com
We collaborated with Cuckoo’s Bakery, a cupcake and tearoom outlet, to create a new range of tableware inspired by their local surroundings in beautiful Edinburgh. Our relationship started from the moment the business was conceived and were able to offer our expertise to create a unique visual identity for the business. From the logo to the teapot to the cafe interior, we have helped support their wish of offering customers something traditional, yet refreshingly different. You can see the collection here on SHOP section our website or go one better and see it all for yourself at the Cuckoo’s Bakery, 150 Dundas Street, Edinburgh. We can assure you the cupcakes are amazing too, we should know, we’ve eaten loads of them for research.
For more information please visit their website: www.cuckoosbakery.co.uk
Photography by Sam Ashley
Market Estate Project
Parasite Ceramics participated in the Market Estate Project, a one-day event run by Tall Tales to celebrate the community of the Market Estate housing estate before the site was to be demolished. All special edition tableware sold out within hours and our continually changing bone china installation of cast net curtains offered tiles for free to the public with the chance to win free items through the postcode lottery, an opportunity for visitors to receive bone china products from our pop-up stall.