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About Claire

I grew up in Scotland and had a love of drawing and painting from a young age. This passion led me to study foundation art in Newcastle Upon Tyne and specialise in Fine Art, later graduating from Birmingham School of Art with a B.A. (Hons) Fine Art.

My interest in leaving a formal arts education was a less traditional route and lay in inviting others of all ages to share in creative experiences, providing creative opportunities in all kinds of visual arts-based projects, throughout the Midlands and surrounding counties. I believe everyone is creative and that creativity is an essential part of our human experience. This philosophy has led me to work with many different people in many different places over the last 25 years. This interest in people and place has informed my practice and has led me to work in in public, educational, private and corporate environments.

My specialism as a designer/maker of mosaic installations for the last 20yrs has evolved through this process and experience. I love mosaic for its accessibility as medium for all ages and abilities, and that it never fails to absorb people. Meditative in its process it allows creative freedom for the individual yet involves the collective, something magical happens in the process of making and the results are something celebrated by all; The permanent public installations become a source of pride for the whole community.

This fascination with people and place has led to an emphasis on visual storytelling and informs my current practice. More recently, I have included archival research and the use of new technologies within my work. I love delving into the history of a place and it’s people, sometimes forgotten, and bringing it back to life and back out into the public domain.

I have exhibited and won awards for my work in this field, recently receiving acknowledgement from H.R.H. Prince Charles. I was a founding member of the British Association of Modern Mosaic and am a member of the Arts Council Craft Directory and STEAMhouse.

Experimenting with new media and production methods has introduced a new and wider approach to my practice; Combining handmade methods with cutting edge technologies. As a member of STEAMhouse in Birmingham, I’m continuing to explore the cross-over between digital and handmade practices.

Claire Cotterill