Alison Britton OBE (b.1948) is one of the UK’s leading ceramists. She was part of a group of radical artists graduating from the Royal College of Art in the late 1970s who began working on re-establishing the ‘vessel’ as an abstract form, taking inspiration from Gordon Baldwin and Hans Coper and moving away from the Leach school of Anglo-Oriental ceramics towards a more modernist aesthetic.
In her work, Britton explores the pot as a form and its relationship to function. Her forms have a loose connection to function in that they are containers, but often their size, lack of handles of double spouts renders use in the traditional sense difficult. The surface is treated as a 3-dimensional canvas with decoration applied in an abstract and painterly manner, with a limited palette of pigments.
Her works can be found in major public and private collections internationally including the Victoria and Albert Museum, London, Royal Museum of Scotland, Edinburgh, National Museum of Modern Art, Kyoto, and Musée des Arts Décoratifs, Paris. She trained at the Central School of Art & Design and the Royal College of Art, London, and is widely recognized for her work as a curator, writer and lecturer.
Britton was awarded an OBE in 1990 in recognition of her services to the applied arts, and she is a senior tutor at the Royal College of Art.
SELECTED SOLO EXHIBITIONS:
2016 Alison Britten: Content and Form, Victoria and Albert Museum, London, UK 2012 Life and Still Life, new pots by Alison Britton shown with objects from her collection, Crafts Study Centre, University for the Creative Arts, Farnham, UK Standing and Running, Marsden Woo Gallery, London, UK 2007 Containing, Barrett Marsden Gallery, London, UK 2005 Barrett Marsden Gallery, with the Ed Wolf Collection of Alison Britton pots, London, UK 2003 Barrett Marsden Gallery, London, UK 2001 Galerie DM Sarver, Paris, France 2000 Barrett Marsden Gallery, London, UK 1998 Barrett Marsden Gallery, London, UK Crafts Council Shop at the Victoria and Albert Museum, London, UK 1996 Craft Victoria, Melbourne, Australia and tour 1995 Form and Fiction, Marianne Heller Galerie, Sandhausen, Germany 1993 Osiris Gallery, Brussels, Belgium 1990 Alison Britton ‐ A Retrospective, Two year tour organised by Aberystwyth Arts Centre, 1988 Craft Centre Gallery, Sydney, Australia 1987 Contemporary Applied Arts, London, UK 1985 Miharudo Gallery, Tokyo, Japan 1981 Prescote Gallery, Banbury, Oxfordshire, UK 1979 The Work of Alison Britton, Crafts Council, London, UK 1976 Amalgam, London, UK
National Museum of Wales, Cardiff, Wales Museum of Decorative Arts and Design, Oslo, Norway The British Museum, UK Aberdeen Museum and Art Gallery, UK Los Angeles County Museum of Art, USA UCW Collection, Aberystwyth, UK National Museum of Modern Art, Kyoto, Japan Art Gallery of Western Australia, Perth, Australia Shigaraki Ceramic Sculpture Park, Japan Australian National Gallery, Canberra, Australia National Museum, Stockholm, Sweden Boymans van Beuningen Museum, Rotterdam, the Netherlands The Powerhouse Museum, Sydney, Australia British Council Collection, UK Stedelijk Museum, Amsterdam, the Netherlands Contemporary Art Society, London, UK Ulster Museum, Belfast, Northern Ireland Crafts Council, London, UK Victoria & Albert Museum, London, UK Royal Museum of Scotland, Edinburgh, Scotland Hove Museum & Art Gallery, UK York City Art Gallery, UK Wurttembergisches Landesmuseum, Stuttgart, Germany Kunst und Gewerbe Museum, Hamburg, Germany Badisches Landesmuseum, Karlsruhe, Germany Princessehoff Museum, Leeuwarden, Holland Kruithaus Museum, Den Bosch, Holland Nordenfjeldske Kunstindustrimuseum, Norway Svenska Handelbanken, Stockholm, Sweden Trondheim, Norway Art Gallery of Nova Scotia, Canada National Gallery of Victoria, Australia Musée des Arts Décoratifs, Paris, France Musée de Sevres, Paris, France