Janice Tchalento 25.03.11

Janice Tchalento

Janice has a great wealth of knowledge and experience, from throwing medieval pots to teaching the Chinese production methods, glazes and pattern.

The early days of throwing pots in the style of medieval ware. Leaving Harrow in 1971. Janice would regularly throw 200 pots per day. Inspired by Leach pottery/ design, using white glaze with colour on top. Her style of making became very popular with surface pattern designers. Influenced by natural forms, animals, and the use high reduction stoneware, she often would often relate the making like a cut of fabric.

Around 1984-5, Janice was inspired by the impressionists, using a free painting style to decorate her work. She discovered over firing the pots created a beautiful blend of colours. Applying many coats of glaze to achieve the desired effects. It was easily recognizable to see and feel the layers applied. Her inflexed at this time was also Jackson Pollock. It connections within the trade seemed endless, forming friendships and working partnerships over the years.

Again, Janice like so many other designers/ crafts people discovered selling their ware in the USA gave a greater return than selling here in the UK. Selling Platters, bowls and plates to Fine art galleries. Very decorative, textile inspired pieces became popular. She was also very open to discuss her production methods. Using a basic bath sponge to cut and shape, and simply dab the glaze on.

In 1980, Dartington Pottery in south Devon Janice worked, training others the methods of production and design. Making tea pots in mass batches. Often designing ware for others to make. A vibrant time of pottery.

Using the Jigger- jolly, slip casting and slip trailing to mass produce. Unfortunately Dartington, is as good as gone now.

Janice worked along side interior designers, taking on commissions and projects. However, finding the Potteries the hardest of places to mass produce ware. I guess working with managers who didn’t have the foresight to take on a challenge or engage in new styles. Later, working with the Chinese for obvious reasons.

Janice was in fact asked to help a failing pottery in China. There she taught the workers her style and making techniques. You could say I was slightly surprised at the extent to working in China, knowing the demise of the Potteries. I guess I wanted to hear a form of loyalty or awareness to the UK. Realistically I understand we live in a world of your wage before others. Although, she did say she didn’t get paid for her work.

Janice has gone onto working with other designers, Fine artists and craftsmen.

She has taught at the Royal College of Art, teaching traditional hand made ware. Glazing in a painterly way. Today, now working on Stoke-On-Trent, creating work for Lewis’s



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