Kit Andrews started his pottery journey at ten years old, receiving lessons from experimental ceramicist Chris Prindl. Over the following years, Kit began to refine his techniques and soon secured his own distinctive style. His recent forms consist of vases, as well as ergonomic mugs, with minimalistic designs and curves. Currently working in Bristol, Kit’s preference for the pottery technique ‘pit-firing’ allows him to create ornamental profiles in a variety of colours and tones. This process is the oldest known method for the firing of pottery, with examples dating as early as 29,000-25,000 BCE.
When preparing for the pit-firing process, unfired pots are nestled into a pit in the ground and then surrounded by combustible materials; those of which can affect the surface of the pot. After the pit is filled, it is then set on fire and carefully tended to at regular intervals. Despite the temperature reaching heights of 1,100 degrees celsius, this is deemed as moderate compared to other firing techniques. Pots are eventually left to cool, then later removed in order to be cleansed. Wax can be used to buffer the fired forms, creating a smooth and glossy finish.
The young potter’s penchant for pit-firing blossomed from his appreciation of its unpredictable results, which often allows surface variations in his work. When exploring the pit-firing process, Kit takes his own approach and wraps his chemical-covered clay pots in tinfoil. To ensure that the clay body absorbs the chemicals successfully, he leaves the pit ablaze for 8 hours. Depth is usually added to the clay vessels during the firing process, with natural materials also being wrapped in the pot’s tinfoil cocoon. Unique patterns can be burnt into the surface, varying in colour depending on the atmosphere within the pit. The amount of oxygen and use of specific chemicals react differently, with copper sulphate possessing the ability to turn a pot either green or red.
Kit’s extensive knowledge and experience, in not only pit-firing but pottery as a whole, is evident when looking at his continuing body of work. His youth allows a fresher perspective, by encouraging a contemporary twist, yet he showcases skill beyond the expectations pinned to someone of his age. This is only the beginning for Kit Andrews, professionally known as ‘The Cornish Potter’, and he is certainly one to watch.
SODEN COLLECTION: WHO ARE WE?
Soden Collection are a contemporary and modern art gallery, located in the heart of Shrewsbury, on the bustling street of Wyle Cop. We feature an eclectic mix of paintings and sculpture, featuring well-established local artwork alongside renowned British and International artists. We offer a number of services, working with organisations such as One Tree Planted and Own Art.
One Tree Planted is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit dedicated to global reforestation. They plant trees to restore nature and biodiversity. Soden Collection are happy to announce that we’ve partnered with One Tree Planted and for every piece of art sold, we pledge to plant a tree through this service.
Own Art is a national initiative that makes buying contemporary art affordable by providing interest-free loans for the purchase of original work. The scheme allows people to apply for an interest free loan of between £100 and £25,000 for the purchase of works of art in any media and the loan is repayable over 10 monthly interest free instalments.