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Stephanie Johnson

I am a ceramic artist based in southwest France. Following a pause of twenty years, I have now returned to my practice and completed my MA in Ceramics in January 2021. After completing a degree in ceramics and glass (1979-1982) at Leicester Polytechnic, I continued to produce sculptural ceramics whilst teaching pottery in London for some years. My present practice includes hand building with native clay, porcelain and stoneware clays, and works on handmade paper using ink made from foraged materials. I have photographed the landscape and environment around me here in France, since 2002, these studies now inform my ceramics and works on paper.


Instagram: @stephieajohnson


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Artist Statement

Reflecting on home, place and habitat my practice focuses on the landscapes and environment where I live in SW France. My surroundings are both wild and tamed – farm, field and woodland.


Since moving here I have used photography to study and document the undulating formation of the land and the traces made by human intervention. Focusing deep into the landscape I am searching for line, form and detail created by the integration of human work and natural landforms. These studies, in turn, inform my mark making in clay and on paper.


I work with a variety of materials, methods and techniques connecting my practice directly with the environment. Originally, the pond in our garden was a clay pit where clay was taken to build our house, at a time when materials were locally sourced and prepared on site. It has become increasingly important to me to align with this ethic and I search for locally found materials to use within my practice.


I dig and prepare clay from the pond and experiment to gain a workable clay body, integrating porcelain and recycled stoneware clays I have collected over the years. The clays are randomly mixed, aiming to produce a subtle, earthy palette. I make ink and paper from foraged and recycled materials for works on paper, incorporating clay, pigments and natural fibres to aid strength and add colour and texture.

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