“On my first day at school, I saw kids doing clay. I knew I just wanted to do that. I was 5.” It is probably no surprise that Taz Pollard won the 2014 New Designers award, the first time a ceramics designer has ever done so.
What strikes you when meeting Taz is the contrast between her urban work and the countryside surroundings of her South Molton-based studio in north Devon. But far from being an inconvenience, it is probably what makes her work so special. She gained experience working alongside traditional and renowned potters from the region. But moving away from the primary utilitarian purpose of ceramics and being willing to change people’s perception of the discipline, she brought her own contemporary style to it. Mixing material and using bright colours is her trademark. She plays with rubber and sharp neon tones, creates loud pieces, daring to take bold steps within ceramics.
For Taz, ceramicists must be down to earth people who combine dexterity with mechanical knowledge. “It does not matter how creative you are if you can’t make it work”. However, happy accidents sometimes happen when opening the kiln and are very welcome.
Taz uses both slip casting and wheel techniques. All her design pieces are hand-made in her studio. Discover her at work in the below video: