Derek Wilson Ceramics sells hand made unique and limited edition porcelain tableware and sculptural objects. Based out of East Belfast, Derek Wilson’s studio is located in a former linen mill. His brand Derek Wilson Ceramics was established in 2007, and he recently launched an online shop to give customers that cannot visit the studio or one of his stockists the opportunity to purchase his work. The carefully curated collection offers pieces available exclusively from the online shop, such as the grey cups and espresso sets. Popular products include cups, pourers, and bowls. Visitors are welcome at the studio, where they are afforded a behind the scenes insight into the maker’s process.
Derek Wilson established his studio after graduating with an MA in Fine & Applied Arts. He introduced his tableware range to support and complement his sculptural objects. He is interested in the functionality of an object, and is intrigued to see which utilitarian pieces people are drawn to. Most of his work is wheel thrown, and his preferred materials are porcelain and stoneware. Derek uses porcelain for the tableware, drawn to its inherent qualities – its whiteness, the depth of surface when glazed, its strength, purity and translucence in light. Stoneware with engobe surfaces is his clay of choice for sculptural and object based pieces, a more solid material, and he admires the contrast the two materials create. Derek notes that buying online is not ideal for someone to fully appreciate all the inherent physical qualities that a hand made object can possess, but imagines the reward comes when the piece is safely delivered and opened by its new owner.
On Selling his Ceramics
“I work with a small selection of galleries and stores. All of the places vary and offer different values and experiences, some stock purely ceramics, some specialise in applied arts and others offer design or clothing. I am selective about what stores I work with, yet they all have different values and qualities that I respect and admire. My studio is a way to have a physical shop at times. It offers an insight and an understanding of how the work is produced, and people are always intrigued to see the place where something has been made. I think this valuable and it elevates it from being just a retail space. In the future I would like to have a studio with an allocated retail gallery space in front.”
Unit B4 Portview, 310 Newtownards Road, Belfast
Photography by Nic Eames