Julia Ellen Lancaster gained an MA Environmental Media at the Royal College of Art and later went on to teach herself ceramics and this is now her primary medium. Lancaster was selected for the Leach 100 Artist in Residence in 2020 and again in 2021. She has since exhibited widely throughout the UK and is a project partner with the Powell Cotton Museum, Kent, delivering workshops and undertaking a ceramic commission.
Lancaster works with clay, minerals and rocks, some spanning millions of years of the rock cycle, excavated from different geological sites. The materials chosen offer a connection to the past, marking and capturing a sense of embedded time. The pieces are fired to extreme heat, often repeatedly, to create forms that investigate the relationship between humans and the landscape, seen as connected and interchangeable.
The works often mimic primitive or other-worldly organisms that embrace the beauty of difference, imagining an intelligent future built from the remains of the past and our present. The present is where everything and nothing happens, it’s a fleeting moment that only exists because of everything we have experienced up until that point, bookmarked by everything we imagine for the future. The work I make is born out of a desire to capture these moments of thought, action and imagination, where worlds collide and the unacceptable becomes acceptable.