Stoke-on-Trent – shortlisted for the 2021 UK City of Culture – is set to host the 5th British Ceramics Biennial from September 23 to November 5. This six week international ceramics festival in the world capital of ceramics will fill the city with exhibitions, installations, new commissions and hands-on activities that will not only showcase the creative potential of clay, but also highlight the resurgence of contemporary ceramics.
Here’s our Top 10 reasons to visit the 2017 British Ceramics Biennial:
- 100 international artists will have work on show in 20 exhibitions, installations and events – in nine venues across the city.
- There will be a vibrant events programme, ranging from live throwing demonstrations given by Keith Brymer Jones from TV’s Great Pottery Throw Down, to hands-on activities in the Clay Pit to give visitors the chance to get clay under their fingernails.
- The AWARD exhibition bringing together the best-established artists from across the UK vying for a £5,000 prize, sponsored by Johnson Tiles.
- Discover the ceramics stars of the future in the FRESH exhibition, which brings together the best of emerging graduate talent from across the UK and Ireland.
- A “re-imagining” of the humble but much-loved classic design icon – the Brown Betty teapot – by Ian McIntyre, which will be launched as an exclusive limited edition available for sale at BCB.
- There will be a series of installations and live performances led by Stoke-on-Trent born artist Neil Brownsword, and Korean artists Juree Kim and Oh Hyangjong, at the original Spode factory and World of Wedgwood.
- As part of the 70th anniversary of Indian Independence, Heart:Beat at The Potteries Museum & Art Gallery and Bethesda Chapel bringing together Warli paintings, film, sculpture, clay, objects, sound and live performance.
- See Fount, an installation at AirSpace Gallery exploring the role of the ubiquitous public fountain, which Stoke-on-Trent manufactured and exported globally.
- Bread in Common, the festival café run by BArts at the original Spode factory site, will be serving hand-made, healthy, seasonal and locally-produced food.
- And the Festival Shop will have a range of limited edition ceramic goodies, and a curated selection of tableware, for sale throughout the Biennial.