Patricia Shone has lived and worked on the Isle of Skye for the past 30 years. She was born in Scotland and grew up in South Devon where she met clay at school. After studying ceramics in London, finances and a love of cooking led her into work as a chef both there and in Italy. Eventually, this took her to Skye where she returned to making pots.

“My work has developed in a kind of isolation both in location and in the methods I use to form my pieces. This is a place where I can feel small and insignificant in the face of monumental natural forces. It is a feeling I rejoice in, when the only possible way to contain the enormity of love for life is to utterly surrender to it.

The feel of raw clay in my hands is a prime motivation for making, a physical connection to the physical world around me. It’s a visceral process, not always comfortable, often challenging and increasingly tiring. My work is hand formed in all aspects of its concept and creation. It is based on the controlled forms of functional vessels whilst being released from the constraints of function by the ruptured textured surfaces. I am looking for the points of contact and balance between the maker and the material, neither having mastery over the other. I have learned to give precedence to the physical process over and above intellectual input, giving voice to my inner and non verbal senses.

The formation of clay is mostly from millennia of climatic erosion. The origins of the material lie in the enduring rock beneath our feet. The processes of firing that a potter uses to complete their work replicate some of the monumental forces which create and erode the matter of the universe. It’s big stuff! The nature of clay used in this way allows me to speak of the continued erosion and weathering of the land we live on; the traces made by the passage of humans across the surface of our planet; the tensions between the container and its contents.”

Patricia has developed techniques in her clay work which reflect these processes. Contrary to the compressive methods associated with traditional clay practice, her pieces are hand formed by texturing and stretching from solid lumps of clay. This process extenuates the surfaces allowing the natural textures of the material to develop. The muted, natural colours of the finished pots are achieved by using different clay bodies and by the various firing processes.

She has been a selected member of the Craft Potters’ Association of Great Britain since 2015, her work is collected internationally and she has work in several national and International collections.



“There is an inherent inspiration in a person’s fundamental being. I think an artist’s work can be a search to find expression for this, consciously or unconsciously. My work is an expression of myself as an individual and of the human history of the material and how it connects one person to another, this is the deep essence in a work which can connect one human being to another, across land and civilisations, a bowl passed from one hand to another.”

View Patricia’s CV