High seas, low tides, maps and migration; a ceramic journey.
Hailing from Whitehaven in West Cumbria, Katherine moved with her family to the Solomon Islands. This seaboard start to her life was followed by some years working in Ullapool in the North West of Scotland.
After training as a community artist in Manchester, Katherine moved to West Yorkshire to raise a family with her husband Jim. Listening to the shipping forecast was a consolation for being landlocked! The shipping forecast, a vital information service, was a daily reminder that we are an island people; it speaks the language of adventure, wilderness and life beyond the solid ground of everyday. It got under Katherine’s skin and she went on to produce her collection of carved, colour-washed maps while imagining the far flung shipping areas surrounding the UK.
Katherine brings her fascination with maps, history, the environment, an interest in world affairs and social justice to bear in her work.
“The sea is your blood. It never really goes away”
Iain MacAuley, Bernera
After discovering clay in her late teens, a series of excellent teachers and tutors led to Katherine working as a tile decorator for several years prior to establishing Atlantic Ceramics in 2014.
Ceramics tutor, North Light School of Art. 2020 –
Found Gallery, Dunbar.
Kelpie Studio, Cruden Bay.
Gallery Tresco, Isles of Scilly.
The Golden Sheaf, Narberth.
Yew Tree Barn, Grange-Over Sands.
Find out more about Captain Fitzroy and the Shipping Forecast here:
The Shipping Forecast was invented by Admiral FitzRoy, who, early in his career had captained HMS Beagle and in later voyages was accompanied by Charles Darwin. At the end of his long and varied career, FitzRoy was appointed, in 1854, as ‘Meteorological Statist to the Board of Trade’, head of a new department, dealing with the collection of weather data at sea. This was the origin of the modern Meteorological Office.
Fitzroy arranged for sea captains to provide him with information, and he then analysed the data collected. He was responsible for the design and distribution of a type of barometer which was fixed at every port, to be consulted by crews before setting out to sea: stone housings for the barometers are still visible in many fishing harbours around Britain.
A terrible storm in 1859 caused the loss of the Royal Charter which, in turn inspired FitzRoy to develop charts to allow predictions to be made, which he called “forecasting the weather”. Fifteen land stations were established, using the newly developed telegraph system, to transmit daily weather reports to him. The first daily weather forecasts were published in The Times in 1860.
Admiral Fitzroy was brilliant and innovative. He established a basic system which is still in operation to this day.
On 4 February 2002, when the Shipping Forecast sea area Finisterre was renamed to avoid confusion with the French and Spanish forecast area of the same name, the new name chosen by the UK’s Met Office was “FitzRoy”, in honour of their founder.