Magda Bethani


Magda Bethani. Shortlisted 2018

Medium: Ceramics


Blue Two Handles Bowl with Twisted Branch Blue Handled Bowls Solines, Black Clay, Bubbly Glaze Nests, Black Clay, Bubbly Glaze Solines Series Stiry Beneath


I came to Ireland in 2012 to study at the Ceramics Skills and Design Course run by Design and Crafts Council. After graduating on 2014 I established my studio in Co. Wicklow where I create high quality functional ware which I distribute countrywide and make one off pieces for exhibitions. I have been privileged to be selected in many group shows and fairs here and in the UK. I have been shortlisted and selected for RDS Crafts Awards exhibitions at the last three years, I have been selected at Portfolio wider program and got a Graduate Award from Lewis Glucksman Gallery.

Now I am in a turning point in my practice. I would like to turn my focus on producing a new body of work that is more sculptural and more suited for galleries and commissions. This new project requires enormous time and energy in the studio to be developed in high standard. For this ambition to come to fruition I need to experiment with different handbuilding techniques, new clay bodies, glazes, slips and other materials. I am at a crucial turning point, as I will need to push my boundaries to transform my practice.

I am applying to Golden Fleece Award in order to secure support that will help me obtain the materials that I need for experimentation, development and production of new work as well as for new equipment especially for this project. The award would allow me to take time away from the commercial environment and focus on a solo exhibition in 2019.

Artist Statement

I create functional ceramic ware as well as high quality one-off pieces. I draw inspiration for my functional ware from a series of 13th century B.C. bronze vessels found in Mycenaean tombs in Greece. My intention for this work is to carry a sense of these ancient artifacts while at the same time maintaining a contemporary and fresh look. The use of distinctive green and blue glazes with stylised handles makes them uniquely contemporary with reference to the historical inspiration.

Recently, I have started to create one off pieces for exhibitions using exciting new forms, bubbly glazes and black clay. This work is still at a starting point so I would like to explore and develop my new ideas with the aim to create highly expressive pieces that will be identified by their rich surface textures and combination of materials.

My functional ware is now both established and recognisable. The Golden Fleece Award would enable me to develop my practice and produce a new and different body of work.