Pushing the boundaries of clay

St Albans & Harpenden Review: Artist Joy Trpkovic creates wafer thin forms out of porcelain ceramic substrate Artist Joy Trpkovic creates wafer thin forms out of porcelain ceramic substrate

Delicate porcelain forms that echo sea creatures and shells are on show at Watford Grammar School for Girls. These inspiring ceramics are the work of Hatch End artist Joy Trpkovic, who works in a variety of media such as photography and painting. More recently she has discovered a new technique for creating original, hand-built vessels using porcelain ceramic substrate – a high-tech industrial material.

“It comes in sheets that are a up to 1mm thick and you can put it through a laser printer and it will retain the iron in the ink," says Joy. "It’s very thin and fragile and totally impractical for making tall vessels as it has a tendency to collapse, but I can’t help pushing the boundaries.“

Her experimentation has paid off and won her national and international recognition. Joy has recently been elected a Fellow of the Society of Design Craftsmen and in June last year, she was awarded second prize in the 31CICA Concurs International De Ceramica de L’Alcora, in Spain. Two of her ceramic works are now part of the Contemporary Ceramics collection in the new museum in Alcora.

“Alcora is like the Stoke-on-Trent of Spain, they have a 300-year tradition of ceramic production and when I first exhibited in 2010, I was the only British ceramist in the show.“

Although Joy’s soaring landscapes will not be part of her current display, visitors can see a range of her pinch pots, lustred bowls, tall vessels, marine-inspired ceramic forms in perspex boxes and also some photographs.

The Visual Arts Gallery, Watford Grammar for Girls, Lady’s Close, Watford from March 6-23 open Mondays and Wednesdays, 4pm to 8pm.

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