Daniel Kavanagh

1994-1996: Loughbrough College of Art and Design. 3D Ceramics.
1992-1994: Stroud School of Art, Stroud, Gloucestershire.
BTEC National Diploma in Art & Design.
Lives and works in Scotland

During his 3D ceramic training at Loughborough and Stroud Colleges of Art, Daniel Kavanagh became fascinated by crossing and pushing the boundaries of Fine Art and Craft. Based in Scottish Cairngorms he spent many years honing his skills in several bronze foundries and continues to develop his profoundly unique style combing design, sculpture, bronze and ceramics to form a harmonious whole. In 2009 he was award winner at British Craft Trade Fair, while his limited edition sculptural forms, together with beautifully shaped thrown works widens his reputation as a foremost contemporary artist.


Kavanagh creates contemporary one off and limited edition sculptural forms and vessels. Forms are classical yet modern, defined by crisp elegant lines and flowing shapes. His work demonstrates an exceptional level of craftsmanship with each piece finished to the highest quality.

Work is inspired by ancient Greek pottery and Japanese ceramics Ceramic work is hand thrown or built using eathenware clay. All bronze casting uses the lost wax technique.

“Ceramic work is hand thrown using either earthenware or porcelain clays, some pieces are formed using a selection of parts, which are then assembled by hand and fired up to temperatures of around 1100 degrees for earthenware and 1300 degrees for porcelain. My work attempts to create parallels between contemporary Fine Art and Craft practices.

The Highland landscape is a constant, ever changing influence in my work, drawing inspiration from the light, space and reflective qualities this vast landscape offers. Forms are classical yet contemporary defined by crisp elegant lines and flowing shapes; inspired by ancient Greek pottery and Japanese as well as the art and architecture of South East Asia.

Contrast is an important aspect to my work the interplay between control and unpredictability, traditional and contemporary, solid but with a feeling of lightness, despite these contrasting qualities I always aspire to create something that is both beautiful and complete. I enjoy the interplay of more organic and fortuitous surfaces applied to these controlled forms which create a distinct finish to the work. With porcelain clay I appreciate the lightness and fragility it provides with its translucent qualities which reflect the elegance and refinement I strive to achieve in my forms.
Work fusing both ceramic and bronze materials to provide an innovative exploration of the two mediums I am most passionate about. Using both these materials within one form allows me to adapt very different approaches during the creative process, firstly by throwing on the potter’s wheel which is a very symmetrical process compared to the abstract experience of working roughly with a piece of bronze. I am beginning to explore the experience of how a thrown form can then be adapted to become a piece of sculpture in its own right. With earthenware pieces I apply metallic lustres to the ceramic surface which share the reflective quality I look for when working in bronze. I don’t believe in colouring the bronze surface when there is such an opportunity to exploit the natural richness of its true surface, choosing only to patinate when creating a contrasting effect.”

Selected Exhibitions

2011: ‘Solo Ceramic Showcase’ , Leeds craft and design centre, Leeds
2010: Ferrers Gallery, Ashby De La zouch, Leciestershire
2010: Harding House gallery, Lincoln
2010: Just Art, Fochabers, Morayshire.
2010: Solo Show – Inverness City Art Gallery and Museum
2010; ‘Made It’ Inverness City Art Gallery and Museum
2010: `Black and Gold Exhibition’, The Platform Gallery, Clitheroe, Lancashire
2009: The Gallery at Bevere, Bevere, Worcestershire
2009: `Wrapped up’, The Devon Guild of Craftsman, Bovey Tracey, Devon
2009: `gifted’, National Museum of Scotland, Edinburgh
2010: Art in Action
2010: Potfest in the Park
2010: ‘Keeping the burners lit’, An Talla Solais, Ullapool Arts Centre.