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Cardiff Met gets creative with clay



Cardiff Met Ceramics students Jessica Dent (L) and Michaela Saunby (R) getting stuck in at the Hey Clay! event

Cardiff Metropolitan University has been getting hands on with clay this month and is celebrating the success of their first ever Hey Clay! event which was held at the Cardiff School of Art and Design (CSAD).

Hey Clay! is a national celebration of clay which took place from the 4 to 6 December 2015 across the UK, running as part of the BBC Get Creative campaign and the Crafts Council celebration of the 'Great British Pottery Throw Down'.

With over 70 venues hosting free events from Newcastle to Belfast to Cornwall, the ceramics department at Cardiff Met was the only organisation to hold the event in Wales this year.

Attendees adorned wellies and used their feet to mix sand and hay with clay, then using the mixture, learnt the techniques necessary to turn unfired clay into a cob oven, typically used for cooking pizza outdoors.

Several concurrent workshops, devised by CSAD's ceramics students, also enabled varied exploration of cob as a sculptural medium, using techniques to build large scale structures as well as smaller explorative forms.

Participants were then treated to a tour of the state of the art Cardiff School of Art and Design campus, and listened to a dynamic lecture on the use of cob in environmental art and architecture by CSAD ceramics graduate Imogen Higgins.

Dr Natasha Mayo, Senior Lecturer at the University said: "The event was perfect for people interested in learning more about the potential of clay using a social, dynamic and skilled approach.

"Ceramics at CSAD is not confined to any category of art, design or making. It is unique. Our students have recognised that beyond any other medium, clay is the most versatile and poetic, the most able to convey meaning ranging from the beauty of the ordinary and every day, to the essential fabric and minerals of our very existence.

"We were so pleased with the turn out for the event – everyone had a great time. We're looking forward to holding similar events in the future."

Hey Clay! was part of the Get Creative campaign and gave people across the UK the chance to unleash their inner potter.

For more information, take a look at the Hey Clay! tumblr or search #HeyClay on Twitter, Instagram and Facebook. ​