With a good grounding in domestic pottery initiated at Camden Arts Centre and augmented at Gospsall Street Pottery in Islington, Janet went on to gain a First Class BA Hons at the Central School of Art & Design, London. She then worked for 20 years as a Ceramics’ Conservator both privately and in museums around the world.
She has worked as Site Conservator for Edinburgh University and the British Institute on archaeological digs in Cyprus and South Eastern Turkey and she worked for 2 years as Product Manager on the N Z Government Lombok Crafts Project in Indonesia.
After what she sees as a 20 year deviation, in 2000 she moved to Masterton in the Wairarapa to realise her dream of having the time and space to create her own work. The path to get to this space has greatly influenced the work she produces.
The Greek Vases she worked on and became intimate with in The British Museum, the matt surfaces of archaeological finds in Cyprus and Turkey and the history behind it all are indelibly etched on her mind’s eye and can’t help but come through in the work she produces now.
In the last 10 years Janet has held seven solo exhibitions and participated in over sixty group exhibitions.
She has been the recipient of seven major awards, including two from Creative New Zealand for New Work, culminating in her exhibitions “Imaginary Friends” at Objectspace, Auckland and “Ode on a Grecian Urn” at Aratoi, Masterton.
Recent work has become more sculptural, with her installation “Persons of Interest” being included in the Whangarei Art Museum’s exhibition “Credo and Quest – A Selective Survey of Religion and Spirituality in New Zealand Art”.
She now teaches part time and continues to produce her hand made ceramics in the old Te Whiti School, a one roomed school house built in 1900 and moved from Gladstone to accompany Grace Hall, a former Salvation Army Hall built in the same year and where she has lived since 2005.
In the almost forty years she has worked with clay she has come full circle from domestic pottery to what can only be referred to as completely non functional work. Functionality isn’t a priority any more although her forms often reference the functional.