.Geoff Cox - ..sculptor in clay
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At school I hated history - just dates to remember to pass exams - but then at Art college I discovered prehistory and archaeology, and the open ended questions of who, what, where and why. At the end of my second year I toured ancient sites on the Moors, Dales and Wolds of my home county on a small motorbike and wrote my final year thesis on Bronze Age settlements in North Yorkshire.
My degree was in three dimensional design (creating solutions to design problems - trying to think outside the box to make original interpretations. ) What intrigued me about archaeology at that time were the puzzles presented through earth-works, artefacts, broken pottery. There were no proven answers, just informed speculations, interesting questions, things to ponder on and formulate theories - the past seen as a series of design solutions, problems solved. History was no longer about dates - it's what happens to everyone - his story. What I do today is history tomorrow. What happens tomorrow is part of today's story. Constructing a story from a few scattered clues is what I find fascinating. Maybe it's the thread that runs through my work.
leaving college I spent the next 13 years teaching in secondary schools.
In the mid 70s we were living in a particularly uninspiring area of East
Yorkshire. I joined an archaeological group and the place came alive.
1900 years earlier, people living here had made pottery, their market
an occupying army. Some of the pieces they produced had travelled as far
away as Egypt - taken by Roman soldiers relocated to other parts of the
Empire. Everywhere were shards of pottery - in fields, under hedges, in
gardens. For 400 years the whole district had been a factory. Generations
of families had produced hundreds of thousands of pots - each piece a
part of a day in a life. The shards now in my hands had been soft clay
in theirs, taken from the ground on which I stood and still here after
2000 years. I began to play with clay in earnest.
teaching art in secondary schools
- whilst still teaching I was selling work through galleries in:-
- now making full time I was mainly
selling direct at craft fairs throughout the UK