This is supremely special. It invigorates the imagination and calms chaos. It’s a hint of hope in a hospital. It’s the exceptionally exquisite Tiled Corridor from Frances Priest. The wonderful work was commissioned by the Edinburgh Lothian Health Foundation for The Royal Edinburgh Hospital which specialises in mental health.
Priest sought inspiration from Craig House, the Royal Edinburgh Hospital’s former site, drawing on two Victorian tiled staircases in the building. To complement this research, she was also given access to the archives of the Jackfield Tile Museum, gathering a unique insight into pattern and relief from the 19th Century.
Working alongside traditional ceramic tile specialists Craven Dunnill Jackfield, 2500 tiles were created for the project resulting in warm ochre and tranquil teal tiled panels decorating the corridor. Frances herself crafted an additional 300 pieces in her Edinburgh studio. Approximately 14 by 12.5 metres were covered in total for the project, the installation of which was completed by Peter Navratil from Recrafts.
The panels are extremely effective in terms of decor, and have been gratefully received by the hospital’s visitors. It’s not only the inviting use of colour that forms the atmosphere, but the creative use of shape and texture which results in a composition with its own movement and personality. The enticing curves and varied relief invites the viewers to both look and touch, and entirely obliterates the clinical feel of white-one-white walls.
Priest has since been invited to present a tiled panel from the project at Design Exhibition Scotland‘s exhibition later this month. Additionally, from the 22nd June – 15th September at The Bowes Museum she will be showcasing her recent work alongside select pieces from the museum’s own collection of Chinese and Japanese porcelain.
With Frances’s pieces for Influences of the East at the museum she utilises clay in a variety of unusual and unfamiliar shapes, exploring colour and pattern and playing with glaze and enamel decals to create a raft of curious ceramic objects.
Photo Credits: Shannon Tofts
A new post by Hanna Simpson, Diary of a Tile Addict, June 2019