About Mandy's Work

How can we value things more than we do today?

Mandy's current inspiration comes from how the development of our society has affected our eco-systems.  Her deconstructed and re-imagined ceramic designs are a response to our need to re-imagine our world in relation to climate change.  Cutting and slicing vessels to recreate different forms first contemplates the sadness of destroying something familiar, followed by the creative energy required to rebuild in a new way.
Combining throwing and hand building skills, Mandy creates pieces which are both sculptural and functional.  During the build-stage, management of the clay is crucial to ensure parts are in similar states to reconnect.  She uses masking techniques to apply her striped designs directly on the dried clay in preparation for raw glazing. This method requires great care as dried clay is extremely fragile though enables once-firing to lower carbon emissions.  Mandy uses an electric kiln powered by renewable energy, reclaims her clay, and minimises her use of water, plastics, and chemicals.  
In a digital world where reality is often disconnected, Mandy believes the bare clay visible in her designs gives her audience a connection with the material.  The time taken to make each piece slows her world down to allow a mindful reflection of the processes.  She appreciates simplicity, the value of less is more and hopes to stimulate conversations about how and why. 

about mandy

Graduating with a First Class award in 2020 from the University of Hertfordshire, School of Creative Arts in Hatfield, Hertfordshire, in BA (Hons) Design Crafts (Ceramics and Glassware), Mandy now has her own studio, wheel and kiln to develop her work. She has studied glazes with Alison Sandeman at West Dean College, Chichester, (2019) and throwing with Sylph Baier at Le Moulin de Leymonie, Bergerac, France, (2018).

Mandy is a member of the Dacorum and Chiltern Potters Guild and contributes to their outreach work by volunteering for their Community Clay Days and wider activities.  Writing for their recently initiated Green Team, she promotes sustainable ceramics practice via their Newsletter. Mandy also volunteered for three days at Art in Clay, Hatfield House in 2019 to support and learn from ceramicists.  She is also a member of Herts Visual Arts, the Barnet Artists and the Barnet Collection.

Following climate change research for her dissertation (see Publications) and wanting to support charities who aim to reduce the global carbon footprint, Mandy donates 10% of any revenues to Ripple Africa. They help stop deforestation by teaching local communities in Malawi build fuel-efficient clean cookstoves from mud and clay.  This, in turn, helps women by saving them time so they can educate their children and become more involved in the local economy.  The charity’s link with the United Nations ensures this quality long-term project makes a real difference.
Covid-19 update:
May 2020 - Ripple Africa are running an urgent Coronavirus Awareness Campaign and helping Malawians to have access to water by fixing broken boreholes and providing buckets and soap for handwashing in rural Malawi.
June 2020 - Mandy now volunteers for Communities 1st in Welwyn/Hatfield to support those shielding by shopping and driving for hospital appointments.
 
Use the buttons below to follow Mandy's work on Instagram or see her pre-ceramics career on LinkedIn. 
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© Mandy English 2020, website created by Alex English