Gabriella Rhodes (b. 1993, Stoke-on-Trent) works with clay as her primary material on the Llŷn Peninsula in North Wales. She spent much of her childhood in the mountains of Scotland and North Wales which created a lasting appreciation for nature and ecology.
Gabriella graduated from Manchester School of Art in 2018 with a BA in Three Dimensional Design. Since graduating, she has focused her practice on celebrating provenance and using materials and processes to deepen her understanding of the natural environment. She was selected for a residency at Guldagergaad Ceramic Research Centre in Denmark in 2018 where she presented works made solely from unfired clay for the first time, and was selected to take part in the Crafting Futures project between the British Council and the British Ceramics Biennial in 2021.
Gabriella makes objects that sit somewhere between sculpture and craft and draw inspiration from the landscapes and geology around her. Curves and hollows that appear on a piece echo the undulations of a hillside, a round seed pod or a water eroded stone. Each piece is made by hand using locally foraged clays, sands and pigments and slow processes that sit gentler on our increasingly unstable planet.
Once made, each piece is burnished and fired outdoors to a low temperature in a traditional bonfire kiln that uses carbon to colour the surface of clay rather than commercial glazes.