UCA’s chancellor appears in UK’s
first large-scale ceramicist group exhibition

Work by UCA’s chancellor and internationally renowned ceramicist, Dame Magdalene Odundo, will appear in the Hayward Gallery’s newest exhibition, Strange Clay: Ceramics in Contemporary Art.

19 Oct 2022

Installation view of Klara Kristalova: Camouflage, Perrotin, Paris, September 7–October 7, 2017. Courtesy: Perrotin. Photo: Claire Dorn.

The show, opening 26 October, will be the first large-scale group exhibition in the UK to explore how contemporary artists have used the medium of clay in inventive ways.

With a recent surge of interest in ceramics by artists around the world and countless people who enjoy sculpting clay as a pastime, Strange Clay offers a timely reflection on this popular medium.

Magdalene Odundo, Untitled (Vessel), 1987 Burnished and carbonised terracotta. Courtesy of the artist and LGDR. © Magdalene A. N. Odundo DBE.

Magdalene Odundo, Untitled (Vessel), 1987. Burnished and carbonised terracotta 30.5 x 21.6 x 21.6 cm. Courtesy of the artist and LGDR. © Magdalene A. N. Odundo DBE.

Magdalene, who is known for her distinctive burnished, hand-built vessels, informed by art and craft traditions from around the world and throughout history, is joined by 22 other international ceramic artists, including Ken Price, Grayson Perry, Betty Woodman, Ron Nagle, Edmund de Waal, and Takuro Kuwata. 

The exhibition will feature eccentric abstract sculptures, large immersive installations, otherworldly figures and uncanny evocations of everyday objects. Topics range from architecture to social justice, the body, and the political – a celebration of the versatility of clay.

Takuro Kuwata, Untitled, 2016

Takuro Kuwata, Untitled, 2016. Porcelain, glaze, pigment, steel, gold, lacquer. 288 x 135 x 130 cm. Courtesy: Alison Jacques, London © Takuro Kuwata; photo: Robert Glowacki

A public programme accompanies the exhibition, which includes a talk between Magdalene and Edmund De Waal, discussing clay’s intricacies.  Beyond Vessels takes place on November 16 and will examine the vessel – a quintessential form of ceramics – and how it can be morphed and reimagined as an abstraction, architecture or even a body. 

To be in with the chance of winning a pair of tickets to the exhibition, visit our Instagram @unicreativearts

Strange Clay runs from 26 October to 8 January 2023, Hayward Gallery, Southbank Centre, London SE1 8XX. 

You can find more information and book tickets here, or find more information about Beyond Vessel.

To learn more about studying ceramics at UCA, visit our course page.