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Craftsman to open gallery at Dockyard

Island craftsman Jon Faulkner is to go back to his roots with a new venture in Dockyard.

Mr Faulkner, who has worked in pottery for around 30 years, is opening the Jon Faulkner Gallery in the Bermuda Clayworks building.

He said: “Bermuda Clayworks will remain to manufacture house signs — it's responsible for that, and Jon Faulkner Gallery runs the shop and the workshop.”

Mr Faulkner founded Bermuda Clayworks 20 years ago, but left a decade later to perfect his craft as a specialist maker of salt glaze pottery.

“At that time, I was more interested in making pots than running a business.

“I've spent the last ten years improving my skills and having some nice products. Now I'm taking over the gallery again.”

He said the former Royal Navy warehouse building housed a variety of craftspeople.

He added: “We have independent artists here, all Bermudian artists, some make here and some at home and they bring things in.”

The building is being renovated and when completed, in time for the upcoming America's Cup and the peak tourist season, it will be more family-orientated with a ‘paint your own pot' area housed in the Clayworks' former office, while the retail section and workshop areas will increase in size.

The interior layout will be changed to allow visitors to see more of the creative process.

Mr Faulkner said: “It will be a little bit more interactive so people can see the making better.

“There are a few different reasons for what I'm doing — the management that was running the pottery was looking for a change, so I stepped in and took over.

“I'm not really renovating for the America's Cup, I'm doing it because it needs to be done anyway, but the America's Cup did push us a bit.

“If it wasn't for the America's Cup, I might have held up a bit.”

The salt glaze process was perfected in the 1500s, but only a few craftsmen are now experts in the technique.

“It's exciting to be back again and I'm looking forward to the future.”

Joanna Cranfield, the West End Development Corporation's business development manager, said: “It's great to see the changes Jon is making.

“I know that a lot of people are excited by the new shop and cannot wait for the renovations to be done.”

Artistic endeavour: Jon Faulkner will open a new gallery in Dockyard in time for the America's Cup (Photograph supplied)

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Published February 22, 2017 at 8:00 am (Updated February 21, 2017 at 8:49 pm)

Craftsman to open gallery at Dockyard

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