Home / 2021 Courses / 14 – 2021 John Colbeck & Franco Rampi – Ceramic and Surface

14 – 2021 John Colbeck & Franco Rampi – Ceramic and Surface

14 – 2021 John Colbeck & Franco Rampi – Ceramic and Surface
April 4 – May 1 2021

The visual totality of forms

Surface Techniques. Some previous experience is desirable 


The variety of surface finish in ceramics is vast. The possibilities range from unaltered surfaces, arising directly from the process of making, to extravagant embellishment. Within these two extremes there is a wealth of processes with which the potter can alter, enrich and complete the visual totality of forms. The duration of one month allows to familiarize and experiment thoroughly with the technical, practical, and aesthetic aspects of the proposed techniques.

The aim

This course will introduce participants, through practical experience, to the wealth of processes possible at different stages in the completion of ceramic objects.  To achieve this aim there will be demonstrations of different processes and their inherent possibilities, followed by the opportunity to use the process to produce a personal collection of objects and samples.

The techniques

The majority of the work will be done on thrown forms, but, where appropriate, work will also occur on tiles and press-moulded forms. The completion of work will be done in gas kilns fired at Cone 9/10 in a reduction atmosphere, however, the processes are relevant in oxidized firings at all temperatures.
The work will cover processes relevant with clay, slip and glaze. The clay processes will include making relief modelled additions, inlay, agate, impressing, rouletting, sprigging, faceting, fluting, incising and carving. Slip processes will include application by dipping and pouring, marbling, trailing, feathering, combing and various resist processes. Glaze processes will include double glazing, trailing, pouring, dipping, latex and wax resist, as well as painting on glaze.

Teaching method

The demos and practical work of the course will be supported by a programme of 8 visual talks showing historical and contemporary uses of finishing and decoration processes. Throughout the course there will be aesthetic considerations that will help participants to make choices. This intensive course is open to all levels but some previous experience with clay may be an advantage. The course is open for a maximum of 8 students.

The Artists

John Colbeck has taught full and part time at Ceramics degree courses in the UK throughout his working life and was for many years Head of Ceramics at Bath Academy of Art and, in addition, has taught many short courses and given lectures and seminars in the UK and abroad. He is author of “Pottery, the Technique of Throwing” (1969), “Pottery, Techniques of Decoration” (1983) (both of these still available as Classic reprints from Axner Supplies USA) and “Pottery Materials” (1988). He produces unglazed, polished thrown forms in stoneware and porcelain



Franco Rampi was born in Domodossola. He started working as a potter in 1981. After an apprenticeship in England and a cycle of studies in Italy he opened his own studio in Tuscany. He produces both functional objects in small series and one off pieces. He works mainly in stoneware, whilst continuing his research on clays, slips and forms. For ten years he has been teaching and collaborating with La Meridiana, and assisting John Colbeck in throwing and long term courses.www.francorampi.it


John Colbeck & Franco Rampi


April 4 – May 1 2021

Lenght of Course:

1 or more month




Some experience required

Total cost:

€ 3800

Deposit for booking

€ 1100


The workshop fee includes the following:

Tuition of 6 – 8 hours per day
Studio open 12 hours per day
All materials and firings
Lodging in double room;
single room on request at additional fee of 220 euro 180 euro.
Freshly prepared three course lunch with wine on all working days 
Welcome breakfast,
Welcome and Final dinner
Coffee break in the mornings and in the evenings

Payment and Refund Policy

A deposit is required at registration. After submitting the registration form, you may proceed with the payment on-line. If you choose to pay by bank transfer, the registration will be confirmed once the deposit has been accredited in our banking account. The balance must be paid at the beginning of the course.

You may withdraw within 14 days of registration without incurring in any penalties and will have the deposit fully refunded.  No refund of deposits past 14 days of registration, pursuant to articles 53 and following of the EU consumer protection legislation.
If La Meridiana cannot hold the course due to unforeseen events beyond our control, La Meridiana reserves the right to offer a voucher for a different course of your choice. The voucher is valid for two years. The deposit will be transferred to the new course.


La Meridiana is equipped to comply with the current safety standards, including social distancing between people in and outside the studio. The building is sanitized and the daily  maintenance of hygiene measures is guaranteed.
Please note that participants will be required to follow the security protocol and to comply with some simple precautions.

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