Ones to Watch: Interview with Kate Buckley

Find out about Kate Buckley's work in our Ones to Watch artist profile.

April 18th, 2020

Back To Blog

Your full name, and university course/year.

KATE BUCKLEY – BA (Hons) Contemporary Craft 2019, York College accredited by York St.John University

Can you describe your work to us in 3 words?

Capturing Light and Shadow

What medium do you prefer to use?

Porcelain, plaster, concrete, wire, 3D pen

What is the inspiration behind your work?

Striving to express the delicacy of paper in porcelain whilst investigating how geometry, repetition and folding capture the interplay of shadow and light, and embrace the space between.

What is your most important artist tool? Is there something you can’t live without in your studio?

Cartridge paper; its texture and warm white tone, its strength and delicacy, how it holds a fold and crease so perfectly, taking its story from desktop to sculptural form and creating magic in the shadows.   That, and Earl Grey tea.

During this uncertain time what will you do to occupy yourself?

A spring tidy-up in the garden and playing games and quizzes at home and via Skype with friends and family around the country. Creating new pieces but feeling thwarted that I unable to get to my ceramics studio to work with porcelain. Busy framing my most recent wall work and completing the painting of my downstairs rooms that were being readied for the now cancelled York Open Studios.

Which artists are you most influenced by?

In 2011, I saw Jaume Plensa’s work at the Yorkshire Sculpture Park, his use of materials, language, light and space were a big influence on my work. Thomas Heatherwick’s approach to problem solving and innovative use of materials.

How do you seek out opportunities?

The best way to be found, is to be found working. And you have to make your own opportunities. At the end of my degree I approached York College and suggested they started an Artist in Residence programme, and that I would like to be considered for it. I am now over half way through my first year of a two year residency and loving every minute of it. Most of the exhibitions my artworks have featured in have come from Curator Space. I also check on Art Rabbit, Artists Newsletter and follow opportunities on Twitter, plus keeping my ear to the ground in my local area.

Which current art world trend are you following?

My dissertation focused on the development of folding and origami, looking at its historical context, its versatility in architecture, fashion and interior design, through to its use with space age technologies and ultimately, its development into fine art. I follow Dezeen, Design Boom and Colossal to keep up to date with developments in the use of origami. In a world where it can feel like its spinning too fast, I find a sense of calm and peace in manipulating materials, creating movement on folded surfaces and revealing the patterns in light and shadow. My work reflects this.

Plans for the future?

Second year as artist in residence at York College and continuing writing my Blog, I was thrilled to be selected for the Art& RAW Talent Award which will give me access to business and display mentoring for the next 6 months followed by exhibiting and selling my work at Art& York in October. I joined the committee of York Open Studios this year as Events Manager, so will be busy organising the Taster Exhibition for York Open Studios 2021 next April. All the artists (and there will be over 150) exhibit one of their artworks together, in a central York location, and its a great opportunity for members of the public to see all the works in one venue. There’s no way art lovers can get round over 100 venues in two weekends, this way people can chose which venues they would like to visit over the Open Studios weekends.

Tell us about an exhibition that has stayed with you

In the Chapel at the Yorkshire Sculpture Park, Chiharu Shiota: Beyond Time in the Chapel, a stunning evocation of body, space and memory. It was hauntingly beautiful and its effect was transformed as the light changed. The power in that one installation blew my mind.

Any books/ films/tv series that you’d recommend for anyone interested in art?

I always love watching Sky Portrait Artist of the Year and Sky Landscape Artist of the Year, I love seeing how others interpret the world in front of them. Grayson Perry’s Rites of Passage was very thought provoking. Thomas Heatherwick: Making, is a book I can always return to and find something new.

What are your favourite Instagram accounts?

Instagram accounts: Ceramic Art London, Doga Ceramique, Jim Bond, Cornelia Parker

What is your dream project?

Dream Project: to continue to develop a technique to enable me to create larger folded sculptural porcelain.

What is your most successful piece of work and why?

Most successful piece of work. ‘Lost for Words’, Portraying Dementia. A very personal body of work that I undertook to help me come to terms with my mother’s dementia diagnosis. Because of its nature and its stripping away of language, dementia blocks attempts to describe its internal experience. My work was an attempt to enter the silent darkness and convey the effects of dementia. It was exhibited in London, York and Newcastle, and chosen by Alzheimer’s Research UK to be shown at their National Research Conference.

Find out more about Kate’s work here.


Back To Blog Next (Menders and Burlers) Prev (Sonia’s First Year at Sunny Bank Mills)


Arts & Culture