The eclectic collection consists of six one-of-a-kind designs that are made up of freestyle, abstract patterns made with various techniques and colourways.
Who is Lydia Hardwick?
Artist, ceramicist, maker, potter, painter, educator – there are many words we can use to describe RCA graduate Lydia Hardwick. She is an inventive, intelligent maker and we feel honoured to have her brilliant work amongst our collection. Having only relatively recently got back into making her own work, this last year has seen her portfolio of work develop, culminating in an exhibition in Norfolk at the Caroline Fisher Projects’ gallery space (appointment only at the moment due to the current covid situation). As well as quite a bit of press including a couple of features in House & Gardens and more exciting projects and collaborations to come, she is indeed a rising star!
As well as Homeward’s collection of plates, Lydia makes pots, vases and decorative ceramic wall pieces at her studio in Essex.
Lydia’s work really resonates with me; I love materiality and being hands on, as someone who has had years of graft and experience as a specialist decorator, mixing colours and glazes, sanding, layering, sampling etc. She has an innate understanding of her material and I love how she plays with different processes and techniques, as she is constantly exploring its possibilities.
Her work is a response to the objects, crafts and textiles that are often found in indigenous communities and she translates them into almost textile-like art forms in exhilarating and surprising colour combinations and patterns.
Handmade inlaid plates by Lydia Hardwick
Handmade slip decorated plates by Lydia Hardwick
Shop the collection: Handmade, slip decorated black & white on terracotta plate and Handmade, slip decorated black & white plate.
How are the Lydia Hardwick plates made?
Four of the plates are inlaid and the remaining designs are slip decorated.
To inlay, she stains clay with coloured oxides, rolls them out into flat sheets and cuts out shapes like collage. They’re placed and pressed onto a separate, plain coloured flat clay surface, becoming inlaid. They’re built up into layered, abstract patterns and the colour is almost embodied in the clay, becoming archipelago fragments of colour. The plates are then sealed with a clear glaze to make them suitable to use. The other two plates are slip painted, which is a freer way of decorating and something that Lydia has been exploring more recently. We’re excited by the new painted designs as there’s lots of energy and rhythm to them.
Two of the designs are also made by thin lines incised into the surface and then filled with coloured clay. They’re then carefully scraped back to leave a neat, crisp and lined pattern. Its a pain staking technique and one that goes back thousands of years and often seen in ancient Cypriot pottery.
These plates can be used for serving food, but they are also objects to contemplate and enjoy in our homes on display as pieces of art – hung on a wall, propped up on a shelf, or to decorate your dinner tables.
We look forward to seeing how you style your plates in your own homes. Don’t forget to share your photos with us on Instagram at @homewardinteriors and use the hashtag #HomewardInteriors.