Current work is influenced by history, environment and process:
History as found in geology, (natural processes of rock formation and weathering), and mans' activities, (structures, buildings and social events).
Environment influences include shape, colour and texture of surroundings, to which my Pennine Mountain location contributes much. (Particularly the dark dry stone walls and the patterns created upon the bright green fields).
Process refers to both the act of making (what happens during the manipulation of clay, slip, and glaze always with one eye on the possible effects of firing!) and an awareness of the passage of time, Changes that occur with events of nature and history.
Individual slab pieces are created through a process which includes using an antique mangle to roll and re-roll prepared sheets of clay . This creates broken edges and areas which are stretched and stressed, generating their own feeling of history. Slips, which are painted, combed, sponge printed and stencilled provide contrasting colours and these are emphasised by applications of up to six glazes and the firing in the reduction atmosphere of a large gas kiln.
Commissions often give me the chance to relate to particular locations, events and people, with an inevitable review of ones own place within the context of human activity. A challenge is enjoyed.
is the creation of ceramics with sculptural and architectural
applications. Often slab-ware vessels, which are individual pieces and
Work generally available from:
Booth House Gallery, Holmfirth, Yorkshire
Please contact Jim Robison regarding other current locations where his work may be purchased.
Other Information - Courses
There are two types of course held each year:
1. Ceramics Course - The emphasis is on personal development and therefore suitable for a wide range of abilities. We will look at making methods and source material in a relaxed and supportive way. A whole range of work will be possible as we look at ceramic forms and surface textures. A visit to the Yorkshire Sculpture Park is planned mid-week. An evening of Raku firing is also on the agenda
2. Glazes and Surface Decoration - The emphasis is on personal development and therefore suitable for a wide range of abilities. We will look at Ceramic Surfaces, including glazes suitable for Stoneware, Earthenware, and Raku firing. Basic technology, mixing and firing will be undertaken. Surface treatments will also be explores using textures, slips, oxides and masking treatments suitable for glazes and smoke firing.
More details on both courses, including costs, can be found on Jim's website (see above)
Born 31 December 1939
Raised in Missouri, USA.
Educated in the USA: Initially trained as a Jet Engine Mechanic in the USAF.
BA, Major in Fine Art, Graceland College, Iowa.
MA. Sculpture and Ceramics, Eastern Michigan University.
Elected Fellow of the Craft Potters Association and served as council member.
He has been Chair of the Northern Potters Association
Part time Senior Lecturer at Leeds University College, Bretton Hall.
Studio and Gallery
1973 - Set up Studio and home in Yorkshire, England in 1973.
1975 - Established Booth House Gallery as an exhibition/sales outlet for contemporary ceramics (including many recognised potters as well as his own work). Week-long summer courses are offered each year and evening lectures are also held for groups by arrangement.
William Havu Gallery, Denver, Colorado, USA
Missouri State Fair, USA - Exhibition and lecture demonstrations (2000)
Exhibits extensively in the UK and Europe:
Lawrence Batley Centre Gallery, Bretton Hall.
St. Truiden Cultural Centre Gallery, Belgium
Studio Ceramics, Victoria and Albert Museum
Contemporary Ceramics Gallery, London
Rufford Craft Centre, Nottinghamshire
Tilbury Gallery, Belgium
Kremple Gallery, Germany
Amphora Gallery, Holland.
by Jim Robison and Ian Marsh
Although this is essentially a very simple subject, slabs can be used to make the most basic of forms to the most complex. This broad approach to slab work shows a wide variety of building methods and shows the work of many high-profile ceramic artists in this area. The book explores and explains most of these methods through step-by-step images and text, using a varied range of both pots and sculpture.
There are often several techniques that could be used to achieve the same result and this book shows that no one method is correct, but there will be one which is appropriate for the potter, the clay and the firing process. The reader is encouraged to experiment and develop their own ideas. The book covers all the basics, such as making your slabs and joining well, simple building methods, use of supports, creating textures, decorating with slips and ways to avoid disasters during firing.
It also looks at many innovative and original approaches, as well as building large-scale pieces and the problems associated with it. The book aims to encourage the reader to experiment and find the methods most suited to them, while fantastic images of finished work are offered to show what is possible.
ISBN: 9781408110072 November 2010 Publisher: A&C BLACK
Large Scale Ceramics
Large Scale Ceramics demand a number of considerations that don't necessarily concern most ceramicists. Questions about the size of kiln needed, construction over an extended period of time, designing for a specific site, assembling, weatherproofing and installation are all things that must be thought about.
In this book, Jim Robison discusses all of these points as well as giving pointers as to getting and handling commissions.
The Ceramics Handbook series was conceived as an introduction to various techniques relating to the use of clay. The books are aimed at the student or the practised potter who is experimenting in a new area.
This book is full of photographs depicting large scale works from many parts of the world and the processes of their construction. It is written in a lively and entertaining style suitable for anyone with an interest in ceramics and includes examples of Jim's work too - over a 20 year period.
Published in 1997 by G & B Arts International Ltd. by agreement with A & C Black (Publishers), London
Distributed in Australia and New Zealand by Craftsman House.
ISBN 90-5703-55-10 (Hardback)
ISBN 0-7136-4168-1 (Paperback)
Ash Glazes: Book by Phil Rogers (A&C Black, Pub.) This book contains a chapter on Jim's individual works and biographical information.
Extruded Ceramics: Book by Diana Pancioli (A&C Black, Pub. March 2000) This book contains photos of relief sculptures which make extensive use of extruded components.
The Art of Handbuilt Ceramics: Book by Sue Bruce (Crowood Press, Pub. October 2000) This book contains photos and details of both large and smaller works created by a variety of handbuilt methods
Ceramics, Art and Perception: Issue No. 18. Article by Mary Sara about one of my larger public commissions in Wakefield. This is a relief sculpture for the Yorkshire Purchasing Organisation
Details of many additional publications including Jim's work can be found on his web-site