A culture of quality and the traditional values of craftsmanship characterise Katy West’s work: purposeful ceramic homeware that balances an economy of design with a desire to draw meaningful narratives from a range of objects, furniture, lighting and tableware. Within each piece a connection between architectural ornament and utilitarian purpose is legible, whether a glazed ceramic pendant light or a porcelain jar, the formal language of our vernacular built environment is carefully translated onto decidedly functional pieces.
Since studying for an MA in Applied Arts at the RCA (2007) Katy West has developed parallel careers as a designer and curator, linked by her interest in objects – their history, meaning, function and application. Her studio practice has involved working with Panel on Scotland Can Make It! developing a souvenir to celebrate the Commonwealth Games 2014. Other projects include commissions for the National Trust, and projects and products developed for exhibition and for sale through her own website. Curatorial projects include India Street, a collaborative project with designers from India and Scotland exploring the legacy of Turkey red, Modern Languages, a touring exhibition for the National Craft Gallery, Ireland looking at the interpretation of vernacular crafts by five international artists and designers. Transformers for the National Centre for Craft and Design, England investigating designs to make us stronger, harder, faster, better, coinciding with the Paralympic Games, 2012 and Our Objects (contemporary ceramics in context) for the Mackintosh Museum showing the work of eight international ceramicists.