After many years working in a family business, Bonson studied Fine Art at Bradford College, graduating in 2010. During these studies, she rediscovered her childhood love of ceramics. Since then, she has developed her own characteristic style and her work has been successfully shown across the country. The work is inspired by the upland landscape of Pennine Yorkshire.
Traditional techniques, refined over centuries, are combined with experimentation ‘to push at the boundaries of what clay can do’. Pieces are hand-built from stoneware or porcelain-based clays and Kath’s own paperclays which allow her additional freedom to develop the forms and structures. Individual pieces may have up to a dozen different glazes, created by Bonson, layered together such that firing at a temperature of 1200°C causes them to interact and create additional texture. Her “image” pieces incorporate screenprinted photographic images, to which oxide pigments are applied, to add colour and further texture.
“With all of my work I aim to create a ‘sense of place’, based around the Pennines, that offers multiple layers of complexity and interpretation – both textural and visual. For me, in trying to share my world there can be no one simple image, no one medium, no one interpretation. Even by presenting the most complex and comprehensive sets of responses, there would be room for more.”