I focus mainly on the handbuilt ceramic vessel (non-functional), with multiple layered surfaces. They combine traditional and contemporary processes. They are first built by hand, then painted and printed with coloured slips; some have incised lines, lino-printed or mono-printed imagery. They are glazed; underglazes may be used also. Decals are then applied, made from my drawings and photographs, also metal lustres on some. I make work in series exploring particular themes. I often focus on a familiar and everyday object or vessel. I aim to create work that encourages the viewer to think and interpret in their own way, and that quietly challenges many assumptions about ceramics.
Pieces in the images include from the ‘Collecting the Scenery’ series. Although much of my work relates to travel and tourism, this series of pieces is inspired by locations a little closer to home, and is based on short trips within central Scotland. Although this project is still in a sense relating to travel and tourism language and photographic seeing, it is not about the ‘other’ but rather ‘home’
Another series ‘Souvenirs from Medalta’ is based on a residency in Medicine Hat, Alberta, and previous research into tourism. It draws on nostalgia, memory and place, and specifics of travel experiences.
The ‘Animal/Object’ series explores natural history collections including the D’Arcy Thompson Museum in Dundee. Stuffed animal displays have potential for multiple interpretations; their presence is complex, concealing many issues and cultural references.
‘A Souvenir From Europe’ is my most recent work; referencing tourism, memory, identity and place.
Fiona Thompson lives and works in Edinburgh, UK.