From humble beginnings on a farm in KwaZulu-Natal, Ardmore Ceramics has grown since 1985 into a vibrant studio employing around 50 sculptors and painters.
Ardmore is the brainchild of artist Fée Halsted, who has created artists from the rural community. She has trained local people to earn a living, throwing, modeling or painting ceramics, and encouraged them to evolve their own personal style. Artists work in an environment of family where each individual is recognised and rewarded. Ardmore ceramics have been embraced by the international art world and have been exhibited internationally as well as in South Africa.
The Ardmore artists’ exuberant use of color and distinctive modeling of flora and fauna makes the pieces superb. Leopards, zebras, giraffes, hyenas and monkeys burst with life from the luxuriant foliage to form quirky vases and bowls. There are also different styles of figurative sculpture including African travelers riding on exotic animals and story-telling figures inspired by Zulu culture. Over the years Ardmore has collaborated with partners across the world to transform their unique designs into remarkable objects, from limited edition furniture pieces to homeware and personal accessories. Their jewellery and fabrics are stunning. Recently Ardmore designs have appeared on stylish handbags and furnishing fabrics, and one of their pieces was chosen for a collection of South African postage stamps celebrating indigenous ceramic art.