Fiona Thompson

I focus mainly on the handbuilt ceramic vessel, with multiple layered surfaces. They combine traditional and contemporary processes. They are first built by hand, then painted and printed with coloured slips; some have incised lines. They are glazed with a variety of glazes, and have decals applied- these are made from my drawings and photographs. I make work in series exploring particular themes. I often focus on one form at a time and explore variations within it; usually a very familiar and everyday object or vessel. I aim to create work that encourages the viewer to think and interpret in their own way, and that quietly challenges many assumptions about ceramics. Part of my practice now includes writing for publication; this feeds into the practical work and vice versa.

Recent series of work explore natural history collections including the D’Arcy Thompson Museum in Dundee. Stuffed animal displays have potential for multiple interpretations; their presence is complex, concealing many issues and cultural references. It is precisely this ambivalence that is of interest and that gives them as a subject matter much potential for creative interpretation. The pieces commemorate animals transformed and elevated into the status of museum objects.

Current work is based on a residency in Medicine Hat, Alberta, Canada, and previous research into travel and tourism. Like much of my previous work, it draws on nostalgia, memory and place, and specifics of travel experiences. Forms are based on the museum collections of ceramics at Medalta where I undertook the residency. The imagery is developed from my own photographs from the town and wider area, with abstracted textures, colour and marks responding to the urban and rural landscapes. I intend the work to reflect the scale, contrasts and extremes of the area, the space and sense of ‘otherness’ (which is a big part of travel experience).

A Souvenir from Europe (F6) 22cm
A Souvenir from Europe (F7) 27x20cm


A Souvenir from Europe (F2) 13 x10cm
A Souvenir from Europe (F1) 11 x 9cm
Landscape vessel 1, (27cm tall)
'Animal / Object' Series
Landscape Vessel 2 (18cm tall)
Small Landscape Vessel (15.5cm tall) sold
Tall Landscape Vessell (34cm tall) £295