Historical information

Robin WELCH ( 23 July 1936-5 December 2019)

Born Nuneaton, Warwickshire, England

Robin Welch is one of the most highly respected contemporary British potters. The full range of his work includes large vessels with related paintings, fine drawings, and distinctive bowls and vases which explore colour, surface texture, form, detail of edge, and line. He is one of small group of significant British potters who expanded the language of throwing pots on the wheel through post-wheel additions and alteration. This gave his generally cylindrical forms a more organic and sculptural aspect, but their heavily coloured and textured surfaces were as much about painting, too, as Robin sought an integration of the visual disciplines he enjoyed. As he once wrote: “There’s no divide between art or craft. You decide to be an artist and you’ll use anything. If marooned on a desert island you’d use driftwood.” (https://www.theguardian.com/artanddesign/2019/dec/27/robin-welch-obituary, accessed 23 March 2021)

Initially studying at Penzance School of Art under Michael Leach (son of Bernard Leach) and the Central School of Art, London Robin Welch then worked part-time at the Leach Pottery between 1953 and 1959 before opening his own pottery in London's west end (1960 to 1962). After a couple of years of world travel, including working in Australia from 1962 to1965 helping Ian Sprague set up his Mungeribar Pottery and exhibiting in Melbourne, Robin Welch returned to England setting up Stadbroke Pottery in Eye, Suffolk in 1965. Apart from his studion work Robnin Welch was a skilled designer for industry including Wedgwood.

When not in his Suffolk studio Robin Welch spent much time in Australia where he appreciated the outback’s arid earth, brilliant light, grittier textures and luminous colour.

Physical description

Stoneware bowl with flange. Glazed in white matt crackle with a faint copper red tint. Dry black glazed rim.

Gift of the artist.

Inscriptions & markings

Robin Welch stamped on base