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Michele Bianco

Artist Biography

The starting point for my work is always walking and sketching. I'm inspired by the forms, patterns and textures in the world around me –the mesh of branches on wintry trees, the geometric patterns in eroded rock faces or the intricate structures of pods, leaves and petals.

The starting point for my work is always walking  and sketching. I'm inspired by the forms, patterns and textures in the world  around me –the mesh of branches on wintry trees, the geometric patterns in  eroded rock faces or the intricate structures of pods, leaves and petals.

For me, the process of making is an absorbing and  intuitive one, abstracting and developing ideas triggered by my sketches and  interactions with the landscape.  In  the studio I work with a range of stoneware clays and enjoy the way the forms  I build are affected by the differences in structure of these clays. All my pieces  are hand built using a range of techniques; pinching, coiling and slab  building. Once the initial form is created, it goes through a series of  manipulations - smoothing, paddling, refining – until I'm happy with the  shape. The piece is then allowed to dry slowly and during this phase the  surface is altered by hand carving into the clay. The form the carving takes  is determined by the shape of the vessel. As the piece gradually dries it can  be refined by degrees. 

Once complete the form is allowed to fully dry  over a period of several days. Sometimes oxides are brushed on before  biscuit firing to 900C. 

After the initial firing, I then move on to  glazing the work. The glazes I use are all made up by me from dry  ingredients which allows me to make subtle alterations to the opacity or  gloss of the final glaze. The pieces are fired to around 1200C. The  glazes are chosen for their texture and visual interaction with the  clay.   Some pieces are left unglazed  but are burnished by hand and then smoke fired with organic materials in an  outdoor fire pit to develop subtle variations in tone and colour.

Education

2014-2015

Diploma in Glass and Ceramics

National Glass Centre, University of Sunderland

2007 -

Printmaking and ceramics courses

West Dean College

2003 -

Sculpture courses

Elizabeth Frink School of Sculpture

1997-1999

MA Conservation of Fine Art

University of Northumbria

 

1994-1995

BTEC Diploma in Art and Design

Leeds College of Art

 

1991-1994

BA (Hons) Architecture

University of Nottingham

 

Selected Exhibitions 

Selected Exhibitions and Shows

2018

Art for Youth North Exhibition, Yorkshire

2018

Watermark Gallery, Harrogate

2017

Zillah Bell Gallery, Yorkshire

2016 -

Bealach Gallery, North West Highlands

2016

Emerging Potters Exhibition, Bils and Rye Gallery,    Yorkshire

 

2016

Art for Youth North Exhibition, Yorkshire