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clay owl made with a bag of clay by jon from eastnor pottery and the flying potter

albert the albatross stuffed bird at worcester art gallery and museum

We always enjoy a clay sesh at Worcester City Art Gallery and Museum, especially as we get to see our old friend Albert the Albatross!

Albert was presented to the city’s museum collection in 1902 by a Mr Percy Pryce Brown, a refrigerator engineer aboard RMS Waimate! The museum curator and top notch taxidermist Mr W. Edwards preserved the bird while a custom-made display case was built by local carpenter W. W. Hunt. Albert has been admired by museum visitors for over a hundred years and is currently displayed in the activities room….which is where we get to work with pottery participants of all ages and abilities.

This time, Jon worked with a group of youngsters from a local nursery school exploring clay on the tables and potter’s wheel. Everybody had a fantastic time and the session just flew by, almost as quickly as a wondering albatross!

albert the albatross at worcester city art gallery and museumclay owl made with a bag of clay by jon from eastnor pottery and the flying potterclay pot made on potter's wheel by early years childrenclay spider made by child at worcester city art gallerywet pot made on potter's wheel by a very young child at worcester museum

Collaborative Coil Pot made with Eastnor Pottery and St. Joseph's Primary School

 

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A lot of our educational work takes place in schools. We travel all over the West Midlands and beyond working with children and young people, sharing the myriad of benefits of working with clay and pottery.

Once in a while a school is able and motivated to visit us here in Herefordshire. We love a home fixture, particularly when the learners are as enthusiastic and turned onto clay as Winterfold House School.

Yr1 made terracotta coil pots which will be fired in time for Mother’s Day.

There was also a bit of time at the end of the session for a potter’s wheel demonstration.

 

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pear tree tile panel made by bromsgrove first school in worcestershire with the help of herefordshire artist jon the potter williams

jon the potter assembling school project tile panel made with the orchards school in worcestershire

The Flying Potter Jon Williams from Eastnor Pottery worked with every single child at The Orchards School, Bromsgrove to make this fantastic pear tree tile panel.

On it’s website the school aims to: “develop a love of learning and the opportunity for each individual to achieve their full potential and to develop and explore their own interests in a secure and challenging environment” We reckon the clay project certainly fulfilled this aim!  Every child hand modeled either a fruit, leaf or branch covered in clay decoration depicting an aspect of school life they enjoyed or excelled at.

The tiles, all 268 of them were mounted on to painted and cut MDF boards and delivered to School ready for installation in the Autumn term. The panel will be hung near the reception area to be admired by children, staff and visitors forever more – a permanent reminder of what can be achieved when we all work together.

close up of orchards school project will herefordshire artist jon the potter williams

 

plastic tray holding coil clay pots painted blue and a larger pot decorated with 3D faces

Just before the end of term we helped Yr 5&6 at Redmarley Primary School make a lovely collaborative pot. The students also made individual ‘Memory’ coil pots to remind themselves of their time spent at primary school.clay pot dcorated with 3D faces and coil clay pots in the background

plastic tray holding coil clay pots painted blue and a larger pot decorated with 3D faces

blue white and green tiles hand modeled with clay which together make up an owl

blue white and green tiles hand modeled with clay which together make up an owls face

It’s the last day of term – Hurrah!

Jon usually works with two or three schools a week, particularly in the Summer term when exams are out the way and arts weeks are common place. Obviously things were a little bit different this year but Jon still managed to visit one school a week, mainly to complete projects that had been arranged pre-pandemic.

This magnificent tile panel will be mounted outside the reception area at Grangefield Primary School in Bishops Cleeve, welcoming visitors to the school forever more.

Head teacher Karen commissioned Jon to work with every child in the school to produce a collaborative, wall mounted artwork to celebrate the school’s 20th anniversary. The owl is both school emblem and logo and made for a really strong graphic. If you get close up you’ll see the piece has been assembled from individual feathers – each one made by a different pupil.

potter jon williams leaning over putting blue white and green tiles hand modeled with clay which together make up an owl

terracotta tiles painted blue and green with a glue gun tip in corner and glue on wooden surface

 

blue white and green tiles hand modeled with clay which together make up an owl

blue plaque with writing writing reading' grangefield school 2000-2020' and sgraffito writing reading 'celebrating our 20th anniversary, flying high to spread our wings, eastnor pottery'