Born in a country in Africa, which became Malawi after declaring independence from Britain, Julian moved to Washington DC aged 11. From the bush to the big city in one plane journey!
Julian had moved from a land where everyone made things, repaired things, sung, walked without shoes and knew the seasons; to a place with electric lights, and where money talked. The adults which Julian first recalls having an impact on his life, were all makers, handy with tools, and using imagination to solve problems. He thought that this was the only approach to life and so was always playing, making, and inventing as a child.
He completed a term of ceramic studies at the age of 14 - that was when he recalls promising himself that one day he would have his own studio. His first job, as a master joiner, was a direct link with this fascination with making. In the mid 1990s, a career break enabled Julian to complete an apprenticeship with a well known potter in America. He built a gas kiln, and taught himself how to throw clay on a wheel. The clay he used came from a small place in England called St Austell, Cornwall, as it produced the best porcelain available.
He worked as a potter’s apprentice for about three and a half years, and then returned to joinery. October 10th 2014, following a life changing accident, which meant he could no longer work as a joiner, Julian needed to remain creative, and to reconnect with himself. He came back to ceramics for the first time in twelve years, with renewed focus. Julian now uses the same clay from St Austell that he used in his apprentice years back in America. He has a studio near a muddy creek in Cornwall. Whilst working he can hear the redshank calling, the swans’ wings beating as they take off over the water, and the nearby robins singing in the hedgerows. Julian is now fulfilling a promise he made to himself 38 years ago.
That promise is his range known as Fosspots……... and here at Panache we intend to continue the journey with him.
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