About Alison

In a world that is often dominated by functionality and efficiency, we as the ARRT DUO want to produce art that we believe has a beauty that can change spaces; drawing people’s attention. inviting them to emotionally respond to what they see and perceive. And just maybe we can say something in a new and impacting way.

Countdown to St John’s Wood Exhibition 4

Wilderness moves on

Exploring an idea is always exciting and you never really know what the end is likely to be. How many ways can you interpret wilderness? The answer is lots and lots: from the wilderness of desolation to that euphoric high that is nirvana, knowledge of self, chi; however you describe it. All these things are facets of the mind and you can’t help answering the question, “where is this wilderness thing?” with the answer, “where ever you want it to be”, but it’s definitely beyond the edge of ordinary. There are places in your world that you can go to, that allow you to clear out your mind and experience the wilderness effect, no matter how briefly. Think about where your place is!

The Prismatic Spring:

One of those places that made me gasp with wonder at the sheer invention of nature’s palette. Then of course we try and make a piece of art that does it justice!

To the left you see the beginnings of the ceramic adventure and below the wonder of colour.

We aim to get these finished for our exhibition in St John’s Wood (June 17th to June 25th in St John’s Wood Church) so make a note in your diary to come along and see the finished item.

Workshop in Glass

As part of our build up to the exhibition we are working with children from St John’s Wood Pre-Preparatory School to introduce them to the wonders of fused glass. In keeping with our ethos of story telling through art, the children will be using glass to illustrate a story and their work will be included in our exhibition,  ‘Wilderness’. A treat not to be missed.

Our Adventure in Materials

Last summer the ARRTDUO went on a Masterclass in bronze casting, we both just fell for the material “hook line and sinker” so our aim this summer is to put our knowledge into practice and introduce bronze into our portfolio of work, so keep watching for the magical metal stuff.

Keep in touch! website:, email: or

Twitter: @arrtduo    Alison and Rob: The ARRTDUO

Countdown to St John’s Wood Exhibition 5

  Feb 2017  Another busy year begins. We have been invited back to exhibit in St John’s Wood in June 2017 and we are all a frenzy trying to make our latest pieces. We are transfixed by the relationship between the human psyche and wilderness; an interaction that has shaped philosophy for millennia. Guess what I think we are getting it, and it is inspiring us to produce some very different work. We are looking to get some pieces of work on show before the exhibition around St John’s Wood to try and galvanize interest. Put it in your diary for the week commencing 15th June.

Mending Tom again and again…


Rob deliberately used broken pieces of glass to create Toms face, a face that in the installation ‘TOM’, is being swept up into a Red Cross dustpan.

Soldiers during the 1 World War with Shell Shock were regularly told to ‘pull themselves together’ exactly something they could not do for themselves.

Every year around this time of year Tom gets mended: the fragments of glass that he is made with ‘fight against ‘ each other. First a crack appears then the glass breaks – the yellow glass of the eyes is always crazed and fragmented. The kiln’s heat mends the cracks but Tom will never be totally cured and will be mended again and again.

Let’s remember those soldiers today who are recovering from Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder, as they are helped to regain some kind of equilibrium after living through war first hand.


Pierhead Cardiff Bay CF99 1NA

We are really excited to be planning for our next exhibition in Futures Gallery Pierhead Cardiff Bay. The Gallery is on the first floor, overlooking the sea: the perfect spot for stained and fused glass and ceramics; fab light and shadows.

We are also working towards our first joint piece. That is to say, our first joint piece where we sat down and planned the piece jointly from the beginning. Our inspiration is diatoms – microscopic algae floating in the sea. If trees can be described as the’ lungs’ of our planet then diatoms are the ‘liver’, efficiently mopping up carbon dioxide from the atmosphere, processing and rendering it harmless.

The ceramic is first fired (no colour yet). We have designed the fused glass which hopefully will be created and fired next week end. The ceramic will then be glazed in colours that complement the colours in the glass. Rob has written another fab poem describing the piece… so come along between February 17th and March 17th to feast your eyes and tease your brain!

If you have any comments tweet them!

Poster PIer Head 2016_less words_edited-2 small

Well I was just testing the technology!

Chris Richards has just sorted out our blog page and I was testing it out so sorry for the mis-information in the previous twitter feed. We are two weeks away from our exhibition in CYFARTHFA CASTLE (October 7th) not Redhouse (same town different location).

Both Rob and I are working flat out to produce our new pieces. Rob’s is an exciting interpretation of his poem Alchemy… the largest piece of fused glass you ever did see -beautiful and curving WOW! My migration piece is refusing to dry even though it is situated in the warmest place in my house – on top of my highest kitchen cupboards. If it doesn’t dry soon I will be sore distressed. come-on clay …. dry!

Message in a bottle – The Virtual Tour

Over the next 7 weeks we are taking a virtual tour of our exhibition “Message in a Bottle” Piece by Piece. You can see it for real at Redhouse Merthyr Tydfil.

Here goes the beginning

student message in a bottle

The Title “Message in a Bottle” may well have been the hardest thing to come up with in the whole exhibition; it was the result of many hours of debate over quite a few months.
Other contenders were:
“Inconvenient Truths”

Each piece tells a story which we believe is important and deserves to be heard.

The stories within each piece are held like messages in a bottle. You will see them, read them, interpret them as you will, take them away with you or leave them at the exhibition.

The exhibition is art from Merthyr Tydfil. Over the centuries Merthyr Tydfil has been a cultural melting pot. The Industrial Revolution saw a mass influx of people from all over the world, China, Italy, Spain, Ireland and Portugal, a great mixing of culture floating here and being uncorked. These many and varied histories created a radicalism, liberalism, tolerance and friendliness that is deeply embedded in our tradition. This for us makes Merthyr Tydfil a great place, where cultures have blended and messages in bottles symbolically come to rest.

The poetry for the title installation was created by creative writing students from Merthyr College who previewed two of the pieces and penned their interpretation for us all to share. Our thanks to them for their contribution.

Make bottles while the sun shines.

The last day of summer saw me courageously throwing not just a cylinder but a bottle shape. Last time I tried anything As technical as this on the wheel was at college! I made a load of mistakes including not watching Simon Leach’s videos to refresh and refine my memory and technique. Having said that I really enjoyed myself and each bottle I made was better than the one before. I have since sliced down the middle of each bottle; the ultimate potter’s acid test, are the sides and base of uniform thickness? Hmm! I need another fine summer’s day!