In August 2008 as part of the Kenya conference of the International Society for Ceramic Art Education and Exchange (ISCAEE), delegates visited Gakoigo Pottery Village, Muranga District, a couple of hours from Nairobi. Here, the women potters subsist by making generous bellied round based cooking vessels, for which they somehow still find a market in spite of the tide of disposable plastic and aluminium that has put paid to so many ceramic centres globally. I recorded some video footage of the coiling process that they so generously demonstrated for us that day. You can find it here. The clips are numbered so you can watch them in sequence, and they centre on a potter called Margaret Wanjiro Gikonyo. This is virtuosic clay handling.
V i d e o
- Assorted captured moments
Margaret Wanjiro Gikonyo coiling
This film is a collaboration between myself, Anthony Dolan (film maker, editor) and Duncan Arthur Ray (composer, musician). The words 'Ceramics' and 'Film' rarely appear in the same sentence. This project was undertaken in order to conjoin the two, whilst celebrating their individual textures. It is amazing how risk and serendipity are powerful forces in both forms. The title refers to the 'White Gold' of old - porcelain - or, as I prefer to call it, the 'White Mud'. 'White' was awarded Grand Prix at the 'Projections d'Argile' (Projections of Clay) Film Festival, Montpellier, France in 2002.