On Saturday 25 March 2017 Goldmark opened its fourth exhibition of ceramics by the internationally renowned studio potter Phil Rogers.
When, back in 2005, we decided to try and give modern British ceramics the gallery platform it deserved, Rogers was the very first potter we sought out to show. In the decade since that inaugural exhibition he has produced some of the finest work we have had the pleasure of handling: proud, round-bellied Tenmoku jugs; wood-fired vases with burnt orange bodies softened by a Nuka rim; and an ever-expanding repertoire of forms graced by warm, runny pine-ash glazes made from the embers of Rogers’ own fireplace.
Now approaching his fortieth year as a working potter, Rogers has been putting exhibition work aside for the last eighteen months. Within that selection, new and developing styles have emerged from the experiments of throwing sessions, from recent interpretations of Korean Buncheong pottery to an ongoing project with Goldmark producing monumental eighty-guinomi sets. But at its core – in essence and in spirit – Rogers’ way with clay has remained the same: a constant desire to explore shape, orchestration, decoration and finish. ‘Working on new forms, trying to achieve a certain ‘rightness’ and crispness of line, is what keeps me interested in clay. Making pots over a long career is about refinement and a never-ending quest to improve. The cliché is always that ‘the next firing will be my best’ – but it remains true that this is every potter’s hope.