Shelley Maisel is a highly acclaimed South African ceramicist who has exhibited extensively throughout the Country.
The materials, shapes and decorations of Shelley's work not only portray her interests but also reveal subliminal influences. The colour and texture of the clay, the hand-painted edges, circles and bead-like decorations, as well as inlaid metal pieces, embody the artistic expression of primitive cultures.
"My inspiration is drawn from many sources. I have always been drawn to and influenced by African, Aboriginal, Pre-Colombian, Oceanic, American Indian and South American art. I find their use of colour, intricate design, symbols and elements of nature, both beautiful and fascinating. In turn, I express my love for clay and colour through my work, using many elements of nature as inspiration."
Shelley also forms her vessels by using the same clay hand-building techniques favoured by these cultures, namely coiling and pinching. In the coiling method, pieces of clay are rolled into long, thin ropes. These ropes are joined together during the assembly process, with the aid of slip (a clay and water mixture) painted onto the upper edges of the coils. The pinch method is the simplest clay hand-building technique, involving only the use of hands to wedge a ball of clay and mould it into the required shape.