BA (Hons) Ceramics & Glass — Overview
We will be accepting applications for 2019 entry to study Ceramics & Glass or Jewellery as part of our BA (Hons) 3D Design Crafts programme - please call us on 01752 203400 to find out about your creative study options.
The materials of clay and glass are receptive to the contemporary designer, yet each has a history beyond imagination.
With their own distinctive tactile qualities – and processes for making which cut across the boundaries of time – these unique materials link the ancient with the very latest techniques, methods and styles.
Glass has rich, malleable material properties which our expert instructors will teach you to work with, exploring its potential and designing to your strengths. You’ll be encouraged to experiment with techniques such as glass blowing, kiln-casting, slumping, fusing and lampworking.
Our academic and technical team is made up of inspirational artists and designer-makers who work with blown and kiln-formed glass, and challenge the boundaries of conventional glass-making – both in the UK and internationally.
Exploring your ideas in the medium of clay will enable you to experiment through a variety of hand-building techniques and small batch production methods, such as mould-making, wheel-throwing, slip-casting and slab building.
You will learn from highly acclaimed ceramic artists, whose experience and expertise you will draw upon as you learn about the material properties of clays, slips and glazes. They’ll teach you all the making techniques you need to achieve your ambitions, helping you find your true creativity.
Our workshops and studios house specialist facilities – including a large glass furnace and ceramic kilns – and offer you the latest in making techniques.
Visual research, drawings and ideas will drive your outcomes, and we encourage you to experiment and learn through the experience of materials and making. You will also learn all you need to know about safe working practices, gaining confidence in your ideas and execution.
You’ll discover how to market your work globally, defining what characterizes your style, and driving your learning experience beyond the studio walls. You will have the opportunity to meet some of the UK’s most inventive and entrepreneurial craft makers and thinkers through studio visits, demonstrations and presentations.
You will be able to work with students from other disciplines, and lectures will inform you about both historical and current makers, enabling you to understand the wider context of the contemporary craft maker.
Our ambition and outlook for our students is international, and you will be given the opportunity to visit events such as TALENTE in Munich, British Ceramics Biennial, the Contemporary Craft Festival and London Design Fair.
Bringing international topical debate into your studies, this programme sits at the core of our biennial Making Futures conference, which in 2017 welcomed over 150 guests from over 13 countries, and saw keynote speakers such as Glenn Adamson, Katie Schwab and Sarah Mann delivering stimulating presentations, encouraging designer-makers to reflect on their place and practice.
What will I achieve?
The first year of the programme will see you working across disciplines within 3D design crafts, while gaining a comprehensive understanding of both the materials and processes behind ceramics and glass production.
It will be your creative individuality that determines whether you specialise in glass, ceramics or work to combine the two as you develop your own creative voice in your second and third years.
Whether you develop as a purist hand-maker or someone who is excited by semi-industrial processes, you’ll have the opportunity to use all the resources of our digital Fab Lab, which could revolutionise your ideas and making techniques in both ceramics and glass.
Our programme is based on learning through making, beginning in the first year with an introduction to the design cycle and process.
You’ll have the opportunity to master traditional processes at the same time as exploring digital technologies, so that you can combine the two in original ways.
There are over 20,000 contemporary craft-making businesses in the UK alone, making a total of almost £500m.
You’ll also learn about enterprise and entrepreneurship, acquiring the knowledge to price, display and promote products to a range of different markets.
Opportunities for studying abroad are available at our partner institutions, click here for more.
Highlights — BA (Hons) Ceramics & Glass:
- Learn how to purposefully design and make, both for industry and one-off exhibition pieces.
- Benefit from our wealth of national and international industry links, with regular visiting lecturers, Erasmus and international exchange programmes.
- Gain professional skills through the opportunity to undertake internships and to work on live briefs with real clients.
- Submerge yourself in your field with frequent research trips, London showcases and chances to connect with fellow artists.
- Work with a diverse range of glass, ceramics and mixed media materials and processes to explore their full potential and acquire technical expertise.
- Show your work alongside practising professional craftspeople in galleries and exhibitions across the country.
- Experience opportunities for cross-disciplinary working, giving you access to digital design and more.
BA (Hons) Ceramics & Glass is validated by The Open University.