Institution: University of Wolverhampton
Course: Design and Applied Arts
Title: Bronze Age Corsets
Description: Repoussé style corsets, slip cast in porcelain. One is shattered into pieces, biscuit fired to 1000c then glazed in silver nitrate and fire-flash. The corsets are then rakued using sawdust to produce a heavy reduction and iridescence. One is pieced back together using resin and gold leaf. The technique of knitting wire wool and dipping in porcelain slip is also used. It is then placed in a mould and fired to 1250c in an electric kiln.
The corset is a piece of clothing that has a long historical background yet still remains contemporary. It translates into the female adornment and male body armour which was so prominent in the Bronze Age, like the cuirass found at Marmesse in France. I felt that cast in the unyielding material of ceramic this softly curving yet severely commanding form achieves a curious aesthetic.
The repoussee found on the Mold Gold Cape and the spiral motifs found on so many items inspired the cast corsets as well as the Sprang weaving methods which led me to weave wire wool. Together the casting, weaving and incorporation of metal (by means of glaze and wire wool) sums up the diverse and progressive technology of the Bronze Age.