Paul Kirnig

Paul Kirnig

My interest in clay started many years ago when I was an engineering geologist working with the London Clay. This interest took an unexpected ‘turn’ in 2015 after I did a pottery taster day with Surrey Adult Education and discovered that ceramics was far more interesting than engineering!

After the Taster Day I bought a wheel on eBay and set about trying to teach myself how to throw. Consequently, there were some terrible experiences, and my wife kindly booked me onto a weeklong introductory course at the Leach Pottery in St Ives. During this week I was taught the very basic skills needed to take me forwards.

Since St Ives, I have been on quite a journey, developing my throwing technique and teaching myself how to decorate, glaze and fire the finished wares. I have attended a number of short courses that gave an insight into different aspects of ceramics, and this in conjunction with what I have learned through trial and error has put me in a position where I can enjoy further developing my own body of work.

Most of my work is thrown or hand built and made using stoneware or raku clays. I really enjoy making both functional and decorative pieces that push the clay to its limits or combining thrown pieces to create composite forms. Once the body of my pieces is leather hard, I usually develop the surface texture with slip, sprigging or sgraffito which can then be further enhanced with the careful selection of glazes and oxides.

I am a member of Southern Ceramics, Wey Ceramics, the Surrey Guild of Craftsmen, the Sussex Guild and an Associate Member of the Craft Potters Association.

My passion for ceramics stems from the appreciation of both ancient and modern styles, as well as the intricate balance between decorative and functional design. I draw inspiration from these various sources and enjoy exploring ways to incorporate these ideas into my own work. The combination of traditional and contemporary elements offers endless possibilities, and I find great pleasure in experimenting with different approaches to create unique and captivating pieces that people will enjoy using and living with.

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