About Ann Bates
I make hand built, contemporary ceramic vessels that are sculptural as well as being functional. My work is either coiled or slab built, made from stoneware clay and often decorated with leaves, seed pods or tree bark. Living in the countryside has had a great influence on my work; pieces evolving from emotional responses and associations with the landscape. Natural and man-made geological formations have also been a fascinating area for study, the latter eventually leading to ancient burial mounds and standing stones with their carved decoration and symbols. The spiral, the natural form of growth and symbol of everlasting life has captivated my imagination and I have adopted this symbol as my maker’s mark.
Interest in ancient burial mounds has led me to investigate the newly built barrows that have chambers with niches to hold funerary urns containing cremated remains. These structures provide an alternative way to commemorate the dead and during the last few years I have received requests to make bespoke funerary urns for people who have either lost loved ones or for those preparing for the end of their own life. I offer the option for people to help with the design process of a funerary urn and this has proved both fulfilling and comforting to some at a time of great need.
Open to the Public?
Yes, by appointment only