I have just been offered a chance to do a "sideshow" (my description) at the CinBA Conference in Cambridge University in April.
Creativity and Craft Production in Middle and Late Bronze Age Europe (CinBA)
I am really looking forward to the conference, as part of my CPD (Continuing Pottery Development!?). I hope to learn more about the Bronze Age and how contemporary artists relate to it.
I will be conducting a small experiment within a display of some of my pottery, inviting delegates to sort items in terms of desirability. My piece of research concerns how both I as a contermporary maker and the potters of the Bronze Age would deal with satisfying the needs of our clients. Bronze Age pottery appears to lack inventiveness, remaining similar for generations and keeping to a reasonably tight design code for shape and decoration. That might just be a result of how modern archaeologists like to pigeon-hole their material evidence, but I don't see a great deal of differences. Modern makers are far less restricted by limitations of technology and materials, but also are free to be more spontaneously creative - making things that do not necessarily follow trends. However as a traditionalist, I tend to pick up on the "tried and tested" designs and run with them, at least in the back of my mind. My audience has expectations that if met tend to lead to better understanding and thus potential trade.
We shall see.