Imogen Higgins: CAER Commission – work in progress

Sculptural ceramics by Imogen Higgins (work in progress).

Imogen is in the process of creating a series of three sculptural ceramic pieces based on Welsh bronze age axe heads discovered in Caerau and Ely. She saw these, along with other amazing finds that are stored in the archives of National Museum Wales, during a recent visit with students from the Cardiff University Live Local Learn Local Hidden Histories and Untold Treasures: Exploring Ely and Caerau Through Time course.

These three vessels were each thrown on a wheel and then modelled afterwards using a coiling method to create the ridge near the base and the three vertical ribs along its face. These ribs are an important decorative element in many of the bronze axes produced in this period (900-850BC).

Imogen plans to use a combination of slips and stains to complete the series, which will resemble the green hues of these extraordinary artefacts.

“My aim when making the series was to take inspiration from the bronze age axes and interpret some of their characteristics into clay rather then setting out to make an exact replica. I have really enjoyed this process and plan to use some of the design aspects learnt from this CAER Studio project in future artworks.”

Imogen Higgins

Following the success of the award-winning Caer Heritage Project, CAER Studio is a one year AHRC funded project that will lead to the development of a series of creatively co-produced art objects and craft items inspired by the history and heritage of the community of Caerau and Ely in South West Cardiff. Local people will have the chance to get involved in a range of artistic activities, inspired by the knowledge and artefacts gained from archaeological excavations at Caerau Hillfort. The CAER Collective, a cohort of local artists, will hold workshops and events over 2018 at which residents can come along and get creative, while developing new skills and learning more about the history of their community.

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