Animals! Talking Heads

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Residential ceramic workshops

If you would like a short holiday break in Hastings with a few hour’s ceramic studio work a day thrown in…

I have two rooms free for August!

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Summer stroll at Dungeness

Dungeness; a unique landscape created by drifting Ice Age pebbles and two huge monolithic nuclear power stations with irreverent and sometimes eccentric fishermen’s cottages, designer houses and railway carriages turned into homes, scattered in among breathtaking displays of wild flowers.


The first nuclear power station was built in the early sixties on the largest area of open shingle in Europe. The shingle is deposited by the sea and it has been building up over thousands of years. The ness now measures some 12 by 6 km, but the entire area is slowly moving north and east and so heavily loaded lorries have to ferry tons of shingle every day to maintain the sea defences and make sure the nuclear power stations don’t end up in the sea…


Apparently, some 30.000 cubic meters of shingle are moved by lorries to Dungeness every year…


The area is also prone to severe flooding.


But all sorts of people buy houses at Dungeness. From your alternative artistic

…to your seriously moneyed designer types looking for cool credentials. Just look at those taps! Can you see the taps through the window?
The average house price in Dungeness have risen by 11% in the last year and is now £231.000 as opposed to £171.000 in the nearest little village, Lydd.


Walking round the area with my friend, who is Indian, we were followed at a discreet distance by security guards.  Police cars kept swooping by, waving in a friendly manner. We waved back.

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Sold – Fat Bird


So this perpetually surprised fat bird flew off to London last night.
Someone called from London Friday afternoon asking for a next day delivery after the post office deadline, and it just so happened that a friend of mine was going up to town. Eh voila!
Thank goodness for synchronicity.

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Studio Birds, Heartache and new Challenges…

So, you may recall my two delinquent cocatiels BoBo and BiBi? DSCF5671_edited I rescued them and brought them back to health.  And in return they: DSCF5306_edited DSCF5453_edited_2 ate my art work DSCF5583_edited and crapped all over it. They refused to ever return to their cage and BoBo developed several very strange kinks DSCF5608_edited Mainly involving blue velvet. DSCF5345_edited Instead of setting up home in their nesting box, DSCF5393_edited BiBi laid her eggs in my ceramic bowls and in my packing crates… DSCF5441_edited But I loved them!
In the end I realized that I could never tame them; I lacked the will, and also the conviction. What is wrong with wild? Except, they ate my work. And they were not very nice to visitors. In fact, some of my regular students refused to come to my workshops while they were being shouted at from the top of the curtain rail. They said they found it hard to concentrate.
A friend of mine contacted a Scottish Cocatiel breeder, Mairi, who read my blog posts and decided to do a mercy dash all the way from Clydebank! Together with her husband she packed their car full of lobsters, crabs, langoustines, baby cocatiels and Bobby, their tame pink parrot, who was brought along for moral support.
And they drove through the day and they drove through the night…arriving in Hastings late Saturday evening.
To execute the swap. My wild, beautiful birds in exchange for two hand reared babies with impeccable manners… DSCF5848_edited So in the middle of the night, I suddenly have these two strange baby ‘tiels being affectionate all over me and my radishes. Tame as anything. I took Jeff and Mairi up to meet BoBo and BiBi. They were roosting on a ceramic torso, looking down, blinking sleepily DSCF5835_edited …at Mairi, Bobby and one of the exchange ‘tiels, Jem. We spent the next day getting very, er, happy! on endless bottles of fizz… DSCF5887_edited trying to get the cooking thing into some sort of continuous order. Mairi cooked a fab lobster thermidor and I remember fixing some luscious scallops in saffron, but in the end, we just kind of gave up DSCF5900_edited …and it was a free-for-all. Except BoBo and BiBI who were still in my studio, eating art work.
The really sad thing is. On the Sunday, as I was stood in my studio, all festooned with the exchange ‘tiels, BoBo swoops down DSCF5859_edited …and he lands on my hand. All these months of loving him, tiptoeing around his fears and peculiarities and then, finally, giving up and realizing someone else needs to sort him out – and the damn bird lands on my hand! And then he walks up my arm and on to my shoulder where he proceeds to beat up Josh, the usurper!
I naturally burst out crying. But the deal was struck, the lobster eaten and the fizz a distant headache.
So there we are. I now have the task of trying to learn to love what is tame, what sits on my shoulders and nibbles my ears. When my heart really yearns for the wild, swaggering, foul tempered, beautiful BoBo. Isn’t there a certain irony lurking in this tale?

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Sold, ceramic mermaid sculpture



So the Mermaid sculpture I made in 2009 finally sold, and she is now in Clydebank, Scotland. It is made of clay and smoke fired.
I am so glad she has found a new home.



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Blue Simona, ceramic torso

Collection Low Res 016_edited

Ceramic torso, 53″ x 34″
I just discovered her in the cellar. It was probably made 3 or 4 years ago. It is glazed and then smoke fired, which is where the black markings and patterns come from. I used Indian wood blocks to create the patterns in the clay.

see more at

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Residential Ceramic Workshops

workshop Guillaume and Emilie blog

Hastings is becoming a very popular tourist destination so I have now decided to sign up with Airbnb.

If you fancy a holiday at the seaside with some creativity thrown in! This is one such creative weekend.

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Studio Parrots

I think I may have come up with a new diet for my pesky, sculpture munching parrots!


Here is BoBo this morning, suspiciously eyeing herbs and salad from the garden…


BiBi joins him…


…and we have a result! They seem to prefer rocket gone to seed. Which is great, I have masses growing in the garden. I’m trying to tempt them with wild garlic as well – it might cure BiBi’s upset tummy.

…it does beat having them munch my artwork.

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From the lovely green ferns about to unfurl in the garden or the patterns on my finger tips, the water gushing down the drain or the galaxies high above my head; they are everywhere. Spirals.  People have been incorporating them in their sculpture for many thousand years, and we do so still.
This is Swift, a male ceramic torso

The size of the sculpture is 51″ x 40″ and it can either be hung on a wall, or

…stuck on a plinth. Instead of glazing, I used bronze filler and graphite powder  mixed with matte varnish and painted that on. Then I spent many happy hours polishing back with wire wool to expose the bronze bits

bronze effect finish, detail

To see more of my work, please go to 

fern fox blog

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