Monday, March 8, 2010

Carl Cunningham-Cole: Algutsboda's Potter

"If I can make a piece sing to its beholder, I feel I have succeeded in expressing not only the estethics of art, but the estethics of life itself."

Having been picked out as one of the shining stars of ceramics in the early sixties when, at his first major exhibition, his work stood toe to toe with Miró, Chagall and Picasso, Carl Cunningham-Cole left England and settled in Scandinavia.
Born in 1942 in Farnham Surrey, England, Carl won a local art contest at the age of nine. This was the beginning of a liftime journey in the astonishing and ancient world of ceramic art.
After a few years at Torbay Academy of Art he was accepted at the remarkable young age of fifteen to the Newton Abbot College. At the age of seventeen he had already exhibited together with british sculptor Lynn Chadwick.
After years of studies, including dialogues with masters like Hans Cooper, Lucie Rie and the grandfather of British Ceramics himself, Bernard Leach, Carl age 22, recieved distinction award from Central School of Fine Art London,and came to represent England in the worldwide touring exhibition "British Ceramics".
When he moved to Denmark in the mid-60´s for establishing a Scandinavian studio he met Asger Jorn, co-founder of Cobra Group in Paris. Following an article by Henrik Bramsen, art Journalist at Berlingske Tidende, Jorn purchased, in person, 7 works by CCC for the international Silkeborg museum of art in Denmark.

After travelling throughout Europe, Carl spent three years visiting countries like Turkey, Syria, Iraq, Kuwait, Afganistan, Pakistan, India, Nepal in order to widen his perception of the ancient artform. Following the Silk Route and visiting Korea, China and Japan, a very important impression. - Korea for example, he claims, is perhaps one of the most important regions in ceramic history, its celadon glazes are exquisite. During this time he had intensive dialogues with, amongst others, legendary grand master Dong O Anh (Korea), whose refined porcelains are masterpieces, the Chinese grand master Liu Shengdao (with whom he participated on national Chinese TV) and Kyoto based Japanese grand master Hamada Shoji. A research period in Kyoto at Kawai Kanjiro Studios also contributed to further knowledge of the ancient art of glazes
Carl comments: "What makes me love this art form, is that I can use Ceramics, Stoneware and Porcelain, in Sculpture and Painting combining both into one medium. This makes also the artform in itself much more challenging, especially when you consider the firing processes.
Today Carl, since the early 70´s resides in Algutsboda, in the vast forests of southern Sweden, where he bought an abandoned old-folks-home in traditional Swedish Allmoge-style (1932). Todays gallery hosts visitors on a global scale, placing Algutsboda and its history in focus. As an example of his lifestyle, he kept a deer as a pet (which he saved from death when its mother was hit by a car!).

1 comment:

  1. Hej Vilken underbar video! Vi som känner Carl upplevde hela året kring Algutsboda! Please send Carl love from Ingrid and James in Mörbylånga