Craft Festival has its own Pottery Showdown
Written: 02 February 2016
It’s going to be hard to beat the 2015 Contemporary Craft Festival – which saw over 10,000 visitors enjoying the multi award-winning event over three days in glorious sunshine. But the organisers have today promised that this year’s festival will be even bigger and better than ever. Having been gripped with Throwdown fever, the Festival will be launching their very own version, ‘The Festival Pottery Showdown’. The winner of the hit BBC TV programme, Matthew Wilcock and all the finalists Tom, Sally-Jo and Jim, will all be special guest potters at the Festival in June. You can meet Matt, Tom, Sally-Jo and Jim throughout the weekend, buy the ceramics they make and challenge them in our Festival Showdown.
Matthew Wilcock, winner of the Great Pottery Throw Down says
“I am really excited to be at the Festival, it’s an event I’ve always wanted to go to. It will be a priceless opportunity to be surrounded by and to talk to many passionate craftsmen and women.”
Sally-Jo is equally enthused,
“I’m really excited to be part of the Contemporary Craft Festival and hope lots of people will come and have a go at making something themselves. It’s a really fun and creative event and I can’t wait to see the other Throwdown potters again.”
Internationally respected potter Kevin Millward has been confirmed as guest judge and challenge setter for the Showdown, which is presented in association with Plymouth College of Art, Potclays, Ceramic Review and Schumacher College, Dartington. During the Showdown, daily challenges will be set to test visitors’ skills with clay and potters’ wheels, which have been generously supplied by Potclays from Stoke on Trent.
Sarah James, Festival Director says “I’m hugely excited about the Festival Pottery Showdown and am thrilled that esteemed potter Kevin Millward as well as Matthew, Sammy Jo, Jim and Tom from Pottery Throw Down will be joining us at the event. The series really helped to get people excited about ceramics and put the industry back in the public eye”.
The highly acclaimed festival, which recently won ‘Tourism Event of the Year’ at the Visit Devon Awards, for the 2nd year in a row, will return to the picturesque site of Mill Marsh Park, Bovey Tracey, Devon between the 10th and 12th of June 2016.
The Contemporary Craft Festival is one of the UK’s most prestigious and much loved craft events in the UK. Over 200 of the UK’s finest makers will be exhibiting and this year’s programme is brimming with workshops, demonstrations, exhibitions, Craft Cinema, children’s activities and entertainment, street theatre, festival food and live music.
Also new this year is the Craft Cinema, presenting a lively programme of vintage and contemporary short films on craft and design. The cinema is hosted in a magnificent 1967 bus, originally commissioned as a mobile cinema by Tony Benn, then Minister of Technology, to travel the country showing films of the latest technical advances to the factory workers of Britain. Walk the red carpet and enjoy a genuine cinema experience in a gorgeous mobile cinema.
Supporting new business has been at the heart of the Festival and this year sees the launching of StartUP. The very latest makers from all corners of the UK, in their first 2 years of business have the opportunity to exhibit at the Festival.
The Contemporary Craft Festival was launched in 2004 and has established itself as one of the leading craft events for collecting contemporary craft. It is part of a portfolio of events organised by Sarah James and Nina Fox.
Festival Director, Sarah James says: “It is a joy to see so many people returning every year to enjoy the Contemporary Craft Festival. The feedback we receive is wonderful and we try to bring something different to the event each year, while still keeping what people love most – seeing exceptionally high quality crafts from diverse and talented makers.