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  • VistEngland VAQAS

Exhibition, Tue 5 Jun - Sun 9 Sep 2018, £8.80

Form over Function

Form over Function

Rosemary Wren, Hippo, Courtesy of York Museums Trust © Rosemary Wren Estate



    This exhibition challenges the notion that ceramics are primarily functional. Explore how artists create art out of craft.

    Ranging from a playful hippo sculpture to an optical illusion box, works are themed into Animals, Clay as a canvas, Sculpture and Community. Through loans from Centre of Ceramic Art at York Art Gallery, our own and private collections, we explore William Morris' saying: "Have nothing in your houses that you do not know to be useful or believe to be beautiful."

    Form over Function includes sculptural forms, painted surfaces and narrative works by some of the greatest ceramicists. Artists on show include Lucie Rie, Hans Coper, Gordon Baldwin, Ewen Henderson, Rosemary Wren and Alison Britton.

    Traditionally clay has been used to make functional things which support us in our daily lives. But over the centuries there's been an increasing emphasis on decoration, transforming once functional designs into beautiful objects for the home. Museums and galleries have developed large collections ranging from Chinese export ware to early designs by Josiah Wedgwood, using them as a basis for Decorative Arts collections.

    Over the last century clay has transcended the function of either being 'useful' or 'beautiful' - becoming a medium of choice for artists.

    Event details

    Dates Times
    Tue 5 Jun - Sun 9 Sep 2018 10:30 to 17:00
    Blackwell is open 10.30am - 5.00pm.


    Adults £8.80 / £8.00 without gift aid. Children, students and Friends free.


    • Baby changing facilitiesBaby changing facilities
    • Coach parties acceptedCoach parties accepted
    • Credit cards accepted (no fee)Credit cards accepted (no fee)
    • Disabled toiletsDisabled toilets
    • Education/study areaEducation/study area
    • Facilities for groupsFacilities for groups
    • Facilities for educational visitsFacilities for educational visits
    • Gift shopGift shop
    • On-site cateringOn-site catering
    • Public toiletsPublic toilets
    • Regional Tourist Board MemberRegional Tourist Board Member
    • Wheelchairs availableWheelchairs available
    • Accepts groupsAccepts groups
    • Facilities for conferencingFacilities for conferencing
    • Children welcomeChildren welcome

    Benefits for Groups Save on our standard admission charge for groups of 12 or more. Visiting all three venues in one day may be too much, that’s why we allow groups to spread their visits over a 7 day period. To be eligible for the discount, all three visits must be made by the same group. FREE coach parking during your visit and a further two hours FREE coach parking at Abbot Hall, to see the historic town of Kendal. Coach welcomed by a member of staff. Pre-booked catering options with reserved seating. Bookable group talks, for differing interest and knowledge levels. Early visits starting at Blackwell before we open to the general public.

    Events at this Venue

    date event
    Tue 5 Jun - Sun 9 Sep Form over Function


    Blackwell, The Arts & Crafts House

    015394 46139


    LA23 3JT


    Plan route to Blackwell, The Arts and Craft House using Google mapsPlan route using Google maps

    Map reference: SD 401945  Lat: 54.34324 Long: -2.92227

    Follow A5074 from Bowness, Lyth Valley Road, then take B5360 located 1 mile from Bowness. Blue RAC signs provided.

    Parking: free

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